Transcript: Costner Inspired by Exxon Valdez to Create Oil-Cleaning Machine

Actor Kevin Costner sat down for an interview with "Good Morning America" anchor Sam Champion last week. The following transcript of their interview has been edited for clarity.

SAM CHAMPION: First of all, let me just say that-- that your subcommittee transcripts are the only transcripts I've ever enjoyed reading because the way you spoke was to understand from the heart, made perfect sense to me, and I have never sat there and ready subcommittee transcripts and enjoyed reading them.

KEVIN COSTNER: The-- the written testimony on my speech? Which one did you read?

CHAMPION: I read the-- I read the written testimony.

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COSTNER: The written testimony? Well, the speech was-- was-- a lot more my voice. The written testimony got a little more technical than even I like to get. (LAUGH) But thank you. You-- I don't know if you did see the testimony or not, my personal testimony.

CHAMPION: I saw some of it.

COSTNER: Yeah.

CHAMPION: On ... when you were testifying, what was the point you were trying to get across there … ?

COSTNER: Well, they invited me. You know, I haven't-- I've been tryin' to make my point for about 12 years. And-- and there's a moment in time where you just can't shout any louder, you can't-- you can't wave your arms anymore. Your ability to move the dial, you know, you run up against a wall and-- and-- and all of the money in the world that I had, had to stop. And so, you know, that-- you know, that's-- that's where I found myself. But I was invited into this process by-- some locals down in New Orleans who said, you know, they had-- they had seen this machine and seen them in oil conferences.

John Houghtaling, who is my partner … went in to, as unlikely as it may have seemed, went in to talk with (Plaquemines parish president) Billy Nungesser. And … "You know, this-- this may seem a little bit unlikely. But-- the actor Kevin Costner has a magic machine. You know what I mean …

(crosstalk)

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COSTNER: So he went in to talk to Billy, who is beside himself, who understood what was coming their way. And … help didn't seem to be on any horizon, no pun intended. And … and basically said, "Look. I-- there's an unlikely thing. You know, there's this guy. You know, you know him the actor." And Billy said, "Stop. Just wait a second. Just stop right there." He said, "I was in the oil industry ten years ago. I saw his machine work in Houston. And it works. Let's get him."

So I'm here writing movies and I get a call and invited to go down. And at that point, you know, I have re-engaged. So, you know what I mean? It … there's only so much yelling and hand-waving you do. But I was invited into the process and I'd begun to work with the locals down there ... And the people, the-- they have a lot of knowledge about how to work.

And they have a lot of fear about what's coming their way. And these guys are working night and day. So I have engaged with the local community, with Billy. And we've also engaged on a higher level with … BP. And the last two days, you know, I've found myself in Washington, you know-- testifying, you know, making people aware that there is … . We're coming to the fight late. But there is something that can add to this fight now, and can actually put things in place so that we never look feeble again, we're able to … combat this at the point of attack.

CHAMPION: So 15 years--

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