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33 Things Shia LaBeouf Said To Students In A Lift In The Oxford Union

"If you don't stream it, it becomes elitist."

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In case you missed it, Shia LaBeouf and collaborators Nastja Säde Rönkkö and Luke Turner are spending 24 hours in a lift at Oxford Union as part of their lecture there this evening. As with all their projects, the trio's interactions with Oxford students sharing the lift is being live streamed.

Here are some of Shia's best interactions so far...

On his intentions:

On streaming from the lift:

"If you don't stream it, it becomes elitist."

“The whole world is in the elevator with us right now. That’s what the internet is. It’s egalitarian communication.”

On the performance of art:

“Is Kanye West more forthcoming because the cameras are on him? Maybe the spotlight allows people speak their truth.”

Playing Cock or Ball with a student named Dickie:

Shia: “I’m gonna say testicle.”

Dickie: “I’m sorry to say that’s cock."

On getting Cock or Ball wrong:

On authenticity:

"Someone like Ai Weiwei has a team of 50 or 60 people making his stuff. They don’t get credited like the people who help make Transformers do."

On the queue:

"The queue is part of the performance. It's it's own society. It's like Lord of the Flies out there."

"I think it’s weird to time people in here. You cannot dictate people’s time in the queue."

"If Oxford Union starts to time people’s visits in here this whole thing falls to shit."

"If you think you’re going to have a more important experience staying in here, and want to sacrifice someone’s else experience, that’s your choice."

On why there is no camera in the lift:

"Because it would change how we interact with each other."

"A part of it is just for us. That's how you create intimacy."

On his perfect Sunday:


On his favourite cop show:

"The First 48"

Shia on why he's doing this:

"I like meeting people, I like connecting with people, I like making friends."

Student: “How much of this is a performance?”
Shia: “Well are you performing right now? You are. We all are.”

"Everyone's in here for different reasons. I'm in here cause I'm lonely."

On loneliness:

"You ever seen Richie Rich? You could have the coolest toys in the world and if you've got no-one to play with it's fuckin..."

“We’re all fuckin’ lonely.”

“There’s this app we read about called Amigo, where they’re monetising friendship. It’s like Uber. You pay someone to be your friend.”

On what he's angry about:

On being someone else for a day:

"If I could be anybody for a day. I don’t know I’d probably be Dr Dre for a day. Definitely a musician. Like Prince. Tupac. Dre. I’d love to be any of those guys for a day."

On conversations in the lift:

“Somebody pulled his dick out. One person sang. Someone had a fear of elevators, got over his fear of elevators. Those are the highlights.”

"There have just been some fire conversations. The majority of our day has just been badass conversations."

On what he's learned:

"The history of the Union. The politics of the school. The history of mathematics. There have been some wild conversations today."

On quantifying his art:

"You know how being at the concert and taking a picture of yourself at the concert takes you out of that experience. That’s how I feel about metrics."

On starting out in art:

On what his family and friends think of his art:

"My dad thinks it’s cool. My mom thinks it’s a little batshit crazy. All my Hollywood people hate it."

On what animal he'd be:

"Probably a Hippopotamus."

On why he likes Hippos:

"I used to love Hungry Hungry Hippos. You ever play that game? That was the FUCKING game. It's fire."

On why Hollywood was slow to appreciate his art:

"It fucks with their money. If you own a racehorse and the horse says I don’t really want to race today, I just wanna go and run around in the woods. They don’t like you living your own life."

And finally:

Watch/Listen to the live stream here.