"If I knew what you said, I could probably answer you," he told ABC red carpet reporter Louise Roe, before awkwardly explaining that he keeps two crows as pets.
Speaking earlier to a Reuters reporter, Nolte discussed the ages of his fellow nominees, 82-year-olds Christopher Plummer and Max Von Sydow, and how one of them was likely to win Best Supporting Actor.
"Age will take it," he said.
Plummer, who starred as a terminally ill man who recently came out as a homosexual in "Beginners," is favored to win the Oscar later this evening.
Asked what he would do without acting, Nolte quipped, "I was always a good thief."