Why Sean Penn says his ‘El Chapo’ interview failed and he has a ‘terrible regret’

Charlie Rose and Sean Penn on “60 Minutes.”

Charlie Rose and Sean Penn in a “60 Minutes” interview that will run Sunday.

(Associated Press)

On second thought, Sean Penn wishes he hadn’t bothered with the whole “El Chapo” thing.

The Oscar-winning actor created a sensation earlier this month with his Rolling Stone interview of Joaquin Guzman, the Mexican drug lord known as “El Chapo.” Some speculated that Penn’s interview may have helped Mexican authorities recapture Guzman after he had famously escaped from prison.

But in a prerecorded “60 Minutes” interview airing Sunday, Penn says he now has a “terrible regret” about the whole incident.


“Let me be clear: My article has failed,” Penn tells CBS newsman Charlie Rose.

Penn says he was hoping that his article would inspire a national discussion about the war on drugs.

“I have a regret that the entire discussion about this article ignores its purpose, which was to try to contribute to this discussion about the policy in the war, [the] war on drugs,” Penn said.

He also believes that the Mexican government fostered speculation about the interview leading to Guzman’s recapture because doing so might put Penn in jeopardy with the drug lord’s cartel.


But when Rose asked if Penn was scared for his life, the actor replied, “No.”

What do you think of Penn and his “El Chapo” interview?

Twitter: @scottcollinsLAT

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