George Clooney and Bill Murray (Photo: Getty Images)
In case you were wondering, yes, Bill Murray and George Clooney are besties and their friendship is as weird and wonderful as you imagine. The Money Monster star didn’t mince words when it came to describing his bond with Murray during an interview with veteran Esquire journalist, David Granger.
“He’s a nut,” Clooney said. (OK, well that much we could have guessed.) But Clooney had far more light to shed on what makes his buddy tick.
“He’s oddly emotional,” the actor director/tequila company owner explained. “He’s incredibly warm and emotional. He gave a toast at our wedding that was so elegant and beautiful and warm and he’s such a loving individual. And he’s adaptable to anyplace he goes. Everybody’s life is a puzzle that’s missing this one piece, and he fits in each time.” In other words, Murray is like the magical jeans in the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants — but a person.
It turns out, in fact, that their friendship runs deep enough that Murray can just drop in on Clooney — at his mansion in Lake Como, Italy. “Bill comes to see us in Italy every summer. I text him [to see when he wants to come], and then I won’t hear from him for three months,” Clooney explained. “Then I’ll be in Italy, and he’ll call me and say, ‘I’m here.’ And I go, 'Where?’ And he goes, 'At the front gate.’ And I open it, and he comes in.” Let’s all take a minute to just absorb how great that visual is.
Clooney also recounted a story about the time Murray spontaneously moved in with him for a week and a half. “We were recording Fantastic Mr. Fox at the house. Wes Anderson and all the guys came there to do it. Bill was coming the next morning. And we all woke up to the news that Owen Wilson tried to hurt himself,” Clooney began. “And Wes and everyone said, 'We have to go back.’ But Bill was supposed to be in Venice in 10 days. And he’s like, 'Well, what should I do?’"
They weren’t close yet, but Clooney knows a good egg when he finds one. "I’d only known him from a few parties, but I said, 'Well, you can stay here.’ And he did. And we would just sit and we’d watch television together, or we’d go into the gym and work out. But you could do it and not even talk for hours. I’d come outside and he’d be lying in the grass looking up, and I’d come out and I’d lie in the grass and look up, and we’d just sit there and look up at the stars for two hours. He really is that guy. He’s incredibly warm, and he really fits into everyone’s life when he shows up.” There’s that Traveling Pants reference again!
Clooney suspects that Murray “gets a good amount of joy out of how much people love him.” Hey, who can blame the guy? We all want to be loved. “I think he really likes that,” Clooney speculated. “There’s this gentleness about him. He’s just such a funny, sweet man. Obviously talented, but in many ways he’s just a normal guy."
That may be so, but then also, in many ways — like how he just shows up at his friend’s houses in foreign countries without any warning — he’s not.