Named one of People magazine’s 50 Most Beautiful People in the World, Billy Campbell is best known for his starring roles in numerous television series, including “The Killing,” “Once and Again,” “Crime Story,” “The 4400” and “Tales of the City.” Notable films in which he’s acted include “The Rocketeer,” “Bram Stoker’s Dracula” and “Enough.”
A native of Charlottesville, Va., Campbell’s enthusiasms include rugby and sailing. He played rugby with the Chicago Lions and the Santa Monica Rugby Club. Campbell’s latest film, a Civil War-era drama titled “Copperhead,” was released in select theaters in late June.
Billy Campbell: Any issue I could raise with the president is either already on his radar, or on the radar of someone much smarter than me, closer to him. I’d rather spend my five minutes talking human-interest: What annoys him about living in the White House? How does it work if he’s giving a big speech and suddenly really, really has to go potty? Etc.
RB: If you could ask the president one question, what would that be?
BC: One question? Well, has he taken a truth serum? Does he have to tell the truth? And then does he forget he told me? If not, I’m not asking.
RB: What piece of advice would you give President Obama?
BC: To remember Ambrose Bierce’s definition of politics: A strife of interests posing as a contest of principles.
RB: If you were going to send the president to one of your favorite places in the United States for one day, where would that be? Why?
BC: I wouldn’t. I’d give the guy a break, let him take the wife and kids where he wanted, and do absolutely nothing for a day but love on his family.
RB: What piece of music would you recommend that the president add to his collection? Why?
BC: “Syv Sind” by this Danish kid, Mike Sheridan, who was 14 when he made it. It’s my favorite all-time album; it takes you to a different place. The president could kick back with his favorite scotch, and forget his cares in this world for about an hour.
RB: Would you ever consider a political career?
BC: If I had nine lives; otherwise, no.
Robin Bronk is CEO of The Creative Coalition — the leading national, nonprofit, nonpartisan public advocacy organization of the entertainment industry. Bronk is a frequent speaker on the role of the entertainment industry in public advocacy campaigns and represents The Creative Coalition and its legislative agenda before members of Congress and the White House. She produced the feature film “Poliwood,” airing on Showtime, and edited the recently published book Art & Soul. Bronk pens this weekly column with assistance from Risa Kotek.