Page last updated at 13:42 GMT, Thursday, 9 April 2009 14:42 UK

Thornton clashes with radio host

Billy Bob Thornton
Thornton formed The Boxmasters two years ago

Billy Bob Thornton has clashed with a radio show host after taking offence to being referred to as an "Oscar-winning actor", rather than a musician.

The star was appearing on Canada's CBC radio show Q to promote his band The Boxmasters and their latest album.

But the 53-year-old evaded or ignored most of host Jian Ghomeshi's questions.

Thornton's publicist told CNN the star "simply elected not to engage with the interviewer because of the direction of the interview from the outset".

He added that Thornton took the reference to his movie career as an insult to his musical endeavour.

The problems started when Ghomeshi introduced the band, in which Thornton drums and sings, and noted the star was also an "Oscar-winning screenwriter-actor-director".

Monster magazines

From there, Thornton's answers were obtuse, erratic and obstructive.

When asked about his band being together for only two years, Thornton responded: "I don't know what you're talking about".

Ghomeshi rephrased his question more directly, but Thornton again replied: "I don't know what you mean."

The Boxmasters
The band performed at the SXSW Music Festival in Texas last year

The host then tried to ask the star about his musical influences as a child, but the star instead gave a response about how he used to subscribe to a monster magazine and entered its model monster contest.

Thornton then admitted the reason why he was being so evasive was because the host had been "instructed not to discuss" his film career.

"You would prefer me to only do this interview not mentioning at all that you've ever done anything in terms of acting, screenwriting?" Ghomeshi asked.

Thornton replied: "That's correct."

The pair eventually called a truce to discuss the Boxmasters' album, which Thornton described as "cosmic cowboy music."

At the end of the segment, the band were supposed to play a track from their album, but Thornton said they would be performing without him as he did not bring his drums.

Soon afterward he stood up and walked out of the studio.

Despite his burgeoning musical career, Thornton remains best-known for his film work, with credits including The Man Who Wasn't There, Armageddon and Monster's Ball.

He won his only Oscar for crafting the screenplay for 1997's Sling Blade, in which he played a mentally-impaired man who settles in a small town after being released from a psychiatric hospital.

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