Obama and Oprah weren't really together during their interview. How tech made it happen

The former president was in Washington and Oprah was in California, but technology made it look like they were in the same room.
Barack Obama sat down with Oprah Winfrey to discuss his new memoir for an Apple TV interview.
Barack Obama sat down with Oprah Winfrey to discuss his new memoir for an Apple TV interview.The Oprah Conversation
/ Source: TODAY

Former President Barack Obama and Oprah Winfrey may look like they're sitting face-to-face in their new interview, but they were actually on different coasts when the conversation took place.

Obama, who released his new memoir "A Promised Land" earlier this week, got together with the TV personality for a virtual chat about his book, the 2020 election and some of the biggest challenges he's faced in his life.

Through the magic of technology, the two appear to be sitting in the same room in front of a fire, but Obama was actually in Washington, D.C., and Winfrey was in Santa Barbara, California.

Winfrey spilled the cool secret earlier this week when she posted a teaser clip on her Twitter page. At the beginning of the short video, Obama appears on a green screen and says "Can she hear me yet?"

"I can," Winfrey says on the other end with the interview background on full display.

"This is pretty cool technology you've got here," Obama replies and slowly transitions out of a green screen background.

The former president seems impressed with the technology and starts thinking about all the other fun scenes they could've created for their interview.

"We should've done this in outer space. We could've both been sitting on Neptune, in a bubble," he suggests.

"You're in Washington, D.C., and I'm home in Santa Barbara, but through the miracle of technology we get to be face-to-face in the same room and we don't even have to wear masks," Winfrey said.

"And we have a fire going, apparently," Obama replied.

During their interview, which is currently airing for free on Apple TV, Winfrey asked Obama how he felt when former Vice President Joe Biden won the presidency.

"I was thrilled. He's become a brother, a genuinely good friend," he said.

The former president also opened up about the rough patches he and his wife experienced during his presidency.

"I'll tell you the thing I think we were good about was talking stuff through, never losing fundamental love and respect for each other and prioritizing our kids," he said.

Obama also said his mother-in-law Marian Robinson helped keep the couple balanced.

"She kinda kept things going, and I'm sure that there were times where Michelle was furious at me, but she'd go up to the third floor, Mrs. Marian was sitting there. She, I know, defended her son-in-law more often than I was aware of. Kept me out of trouble," he said.