TODAY | September 18, 2013
>> the way, savannah guthrie already taking a shine to her new co-anchor, hugh jackman .
>> oh, stop it. thanks, pal. i want to thank you in advance for this. oscar-nominated and tony award winning actor hugh jackman is on the big screen . it's a good one. it's called "prisoners." he is a father whose young daughter is kidnapped along with a friend on thanksgiving day and he'll stop at nothing to get them back.
>> maybe he is at home. how can he drive an rv.
>> we're considering all possibilities.
>> i don't think you are considering all possibilities. shut up for a second.
>> i need you to calm down. i understand this is an incredibly hard time but i have every uniformed police officer in this state looking for anna.
>> welcome back. it's good to see you.
>> it's good to see you too, matt.
>> i want people to understand i think this is a really well done movie. it is tough.
>> it is tough.
>> there's tough moments in it. it's a dad. you're a dad. how did you jump into this role.
>> when i read it, i had a pit in my stomach. i had my kid go into the super market for a minute or two or at one point 40 minutes. it's a hard thing for a parent. it's gripping and suspenseful and makes you think. it makes you think long after the credits roll .
>> that's important. this is not just a movie about loss and panic. this is a story that asks you, especially if you're a parent, to ask yourself some very tough questions about how far you'd go.
>> that's true. i often think about it. my character goes about as far as you could think possible and i often ask myself that as i'm playing it and it asks the viewer that. i don't know if i'd go far but my wife would push me away. there's something primal about this thing. urge and need to protect our kids. when they're in jeopardy and the police are saying calm down and let us do our job. it goes beyond reason .
>> it gave me a different perspective to so many of the stories we covered of missing children because you play it out with all the emotions in front of everyone.
>> everyone sees like the press conference the parents does and they're often encouraged to do that. i did a lot of research into it. i spoke to couples and it is literally maddening for many of them and even when they find their kids. no one sleeps. everyone is in this state of desperation and it changes people forever.
>> but you're obviously getting really meaty roles right now. you want to stay acting for a long time. you wouldn't want to leave your end of the business to do anything else right now?
>> i'm always open, matt. that's the way i think it's best to be in life.
>> roll the clip of the interview you did with jake recently when you were like what would you do if you didn't do what you were doing?
>> i remember, i don't know if i grew up thinking i want to be matt lauer , but as much as i like matt -- but that job, i was like -- i studied journalism but i was a really bad investigative journalist. like you finish at 9:00 in the morning.
>> aren't you done by 9:00?
>> i know that's not true.
>> i have a problem with this for two reasons, one, the idea that you grew up watching me. you're 44 years old. that's not possible.
>> that's not possible.
>> and secondly, why would you make my life hard.
>> i'm sorry.
>> there's online polls now, old, bald matt lauer or young strapping hugh jackman .
>> hugh, you're hired.
>> no. stay with matt.
>> she'd like that better, believe me. do you really think about doing something like this at some point?
>> i actually graduated in journalism and i realized i would be bad at it.
>> why? i think you'd be great at it.
>> i could probably do half of it. the easy interviews or when it came to the tougher interviews i'm just gullible. i believe people. sure, yeah.
>> would you like to try it one day, actually.
>> okay. here's the offer.
>> i'm not going to go away. i'm not going to take a day off, i'm not that stupid but why don't you the next time you're in town come on in here and guest host for a day.
>> really. i'd like it. yes. i'm in.
>> sorry for you all.
>> by the way, i want to be clear about this, guest host with me, not savannah.
>> just you and me pal.
>> can we finish at 9:00?
>> yes, you can go home at 9:00.
>> thank you.
>> let me end back where i started. this movie is powerful and great and you're amazing in it.
>> thank you.
>> "prisoners" is in theaters on