Kevin Winter, Getty Images Nominees for the 2013 Teen Choice Awards are trickling…
- Posted on Dec 15th 2009 4:00PM by Pat Pemberton
According to 'Big Man: Real Life & Tall Tales,' written by Clemons and co-author Don Reo, De Niro confessed to having heard Springsteen utter the question in concert. "That was part of our shtick back in the day," Clemons tells Spinner.
As adoring fans roared in approval, Springsteen would say, "Are you talkin' to me?" Then he'd look around the stage and back toward the crowd, repeating the line.
De Niro later borrowed the line for trigger-happy Travis Bickle, the circling-the-drain cabbie he portrayed in the 1976 film. When 'Taxi Driver' came out, Clemons says he immediately recognized the line, which would become synonymous with De Niro.
"It made a connection, but there was nothing said about it," says Clemons. "Nobody said, 'Hey, you took that from Bruce Springsteen!' We all knew where it came from so that was it."
Some time later, De Niro confirmed that he did, in fact, lift the line. But he made Clemons promise not to reveal his secret for 25 years. Now that the secret is out, Clemons is waiting to hear from De Niro.
"I sent him the book, so I'm sure he's seen it," Clemons says.