"He is a great actor, and an even better director," says Obama, who admits he can't be offended

By Stephen M. Silverman
Updated September 02, 2012 03:25 PM
Credit: Edward Linsmier/Getty; Harry E. Walker/MCT/Getty

While it’s not being said that Clint Eastwood made President Obama’s day, the chief executive does own up to being “a huge fan” of the actor-filmmaker – who last week delivered a long and much-discussed prime-time presentation on stage at the Republican National Convention that was critical of the current administration.

“He is a great actor, and an even better director,” the President told USA Today in an interview aboard Air Force One. “I think the last few movies that he’s made have been terrific.”

The newspaper then asked point blank if Obama took offense at what Eastwood did – speaking to an empty chair that was meant to represent Obama’s sitting there and responding to the screen legend’s pointed questions.

“One thing about being president or running for president,” replied Obama, “if you’re easily offended, you should probably choose another profession.”

Soon after Eastwood’s televised appearance at the RNC in Tampa, Obama’s campaign staff took to its Twitter account to fire back at Eastwood and his empty chair symbol. The message, accompanied by a photo of the presidential chair with Obama sitting in it: “This seat’s taken.”

The Democratic National Convention kicks off this week in Charlotte, N.C.