Published June 26, 2006
Future Clooney dates will have an opportunity to revisit that talk, and hundreds of other interviews Walters has conducted for ABC News specials over the past three decades, due to a deal announced Monday with Sirius Satellite Radio.
Sirius will air a weekly two-hour series, starting next year, that replays many of the interviews Walters has conducted since joining ABC in 1976. About four interviews will be featured in each program, with new introductions by Walters to place them into the context of the time.
"It is a wonderful way for them to be heard," Walters told The Associated Press. "So many of them are classics. It is everything from Lucille Ball and John Wayne and Bing Crosby and George Burns to Matthew McConaughey and Julia Roberts."
Separately, Walters will also conduct some call-in programs for Sirius.
Walters owns the rights to the interviews she conducted for "The Barbara Walters Special," which includes her annual Oscar-night chats. ABC News still controls interviews that she did under the auspices of "20/20."
Clooney told Walters in 1995 that he intended to remain a bachelor.
"He tells me that that haunts him, that every time he meets someone the woman says, `Ah, you said you were never going to marry again,"' she said.
Her interviews are a television institution. As the Clooney example shows, Walters rarely hesitates to get personal.
Sirius is the smaller of the two satellite radio services, with more than 4.2 million subscribers, and projections of 6.2 million by year's end. (XM Satellite Radio expects to have 9 million subscribers by the end of 2006.) Among Sirius' other talk-oriented material is "Martha Stewart Living Radio"; CosmoRadio, from Cosmopolitan magazine; and a show with Candace Bushnell, whose magazine columns inspired the TV show "Sex and the City."
Four times a year beginning this fall, Walters has agreed to do "Ask Barbara Anything," a one-hour show where she will take calls from listeners. That format is flexible; she may also conduct some live interviews, Walters said.
Doing radio, she said, has always intrigued her. Don't look for Walters, 74, to be spinning the hits, though.
"I don't know if I will go that far," she said.