John Travolta, clown prince of meme, has a refreshingly good-natured attitude about his late-career turn as the Awards-Show Goof ‘Em Up Guy. During an appearance on Dallas–Fort Worth radio station Hot 93.3 on Friday to promote The Fanatic (more on that in a minute), Travolta told host Bret Mega that he “kinda loved” his mix-up at the VMAs, in which he appeared to mistake Jade Jolie in Taylor Swift drag for Swift herself onstage.
“I thought it was so funny, the way it was interpreted. And it was cool, I didn’t care. You know if I wear a polka-dot tie, if I shave my head, it’s headlines. If I mispronounce something, it’s headlines. I know that about me. My whole life, for whatever reason, it’s the Liz Taylor club, you know? You wear a different dress, you wear a different hairstyle, you’re headline news. So I don’t mind that. As a matter of fact, I sometimes fantasize, what if I had given it to her? Wouldn’t that have been awesome?”
Considering Swift’s history with VMA award interceptions, maybe handing it off to Jade Jolie to save face wouldn’t have been the most awesome. Also, you can’t help but be charmed by Travolta comparing himself to Elizabeth Taylor over a hypothetical situation where he scandalizes Hollywood by wearing a polka-dot tie.
Hopefully, Travolta can apply his good-natured attitude to another setback: his new Fred Durst-directed thriller The Fanatic bombed when it premiered on Friday, earning roughly $60 per screen, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Normally, it gives us no pleasure to report this level of bomb, but Travolta helped put things into perspective in that Hot 93.3 interview about the VMAs, saying, “Look. We’re in pretty good shape on the day, any given day, that that kind of thing can make headlines.” He added: “I shaved my head, it went viral. It was a good day […] we’re so used to this inundation of bad news, the idea that something so light, so insignificant as those items would do that, means at least for today, there’s no bad news.” Maybe, just maybe, by generating headlines with his blunders, John Travolta is doing
the lord’s Xenu’s work. Can Travolta’s awards-show blunders and shaved head save us from the news cycle? They might be the best chance we’ve got. As Jade Jolie herself once sang: “Girl, that’s okay. Just keep shavin’.”