George Clooney prayed his celebrity didn’t get in the way of his humanitarian work in war-torn Darfur, because it could have cost him his life.
The movie star made several trips to Sudan when he decided to highlight the country’s “slow-burning genocide” a decade ago, taking his newsman father Nick with him to get the facts about the nation’s brutal civil War – and the innocents caught up in the violence.
And in a new interview with David Letterman for the U.S. TV personality’s new Netflix show My Next Guest Needs No Introduction, the Michael Clayton star admits there was one trip where he literally risked his life.
“We were trying to get to a town called Kadugli, which was a very dangerous place to get to, and there was a real sense of adventure in someone saying, ‘You can’t get to Kadugli…’,” George explains.
“That drive up the road (is) where they (soldiers) pull you over and a 14-year-old kid pulls you out of the car and he’s got an AK-47 (rifle) and he makes you kneel down and puts a gun to your chest… and there’s nobody around, and so many times that’s how you get killed.”
Clooney jokes that if the teenager had seen him in Joel Schumacher’s 1997 superhero flop Batman & Robin, he would have shot him on the spot.
“He’d be like, ‘I know you… boom! You put nipples on the Batsuit. Gimme the director; I’m gonna shoot him too!'”
During My Next Guest Needs No Introduction, which started streaming on Netflix on Friday, Letterman also visits George’s parents in his native Kentucky and spends time with the Iraqi student the Clooneys have taken in.
Hazim Avdal and his family were persecuted by ISIS terrorists for their Yezidi faith. He is now being sponsored by the Clooneys as he seeks a U.S. education.