Billy Bob Thornton realised a career-long dream recently when he interviewed pal Kathy Bates for Oprah Winfrey's TV show. The two Oscar winners got together in the library at Bates' Hollywood home to chat about winning Academy Awards, appearing nude and beating illness. Thornton, who won a Best Screenplay Oscar for SLINGBLADE, revealed, "After the Oscar you start to know different people and I got phonecalls right away when I was nominated for Slingblade. Two of the very first calls I got were from Gregory Peck and Elizabeth Taylor. "I remember my sons at Elizabeth Taylor's house; I'm sitting by her pool and one of my little boys was sitting on Shirley Maclaine's lap and then the other boy was sitting on Elizabeth Taylor's lap and then Lauren Bacall was sitting there, Angie Dickinson was there. "For a while you just fall into it like you're at a party at someone's house... and then it'll dawn on you, 'Wow, that's Lauren Bacall! That's Humphrey Bogart's wife right there. Why am I here?'" Bates revealed her MISERY Oscar win has since been overshadowed by her cancer battle and recovery. She said, "I was sick with cancer a couple of years ago and I would have to say that was the most important thing I've ever experienced - going through that and realising how I really feel about life and how I feel about my family and my friends and the people that stood by me. "I guess if I had discovered the cure for cancer that would be the greatest thing. Life and death matters have touched me more and made me appreciate my life more (than winning an Oscar)."