Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : December 10th 2015 Contents B4
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Thursday, December 10, 2015
LOS ANGELES---When speaking about Star
Wars, there are few topics that inspire a twin-
kle in Harrison Ford s eyes.
The 73-year-old actor is matter-of-fact
about almost everything involving the sci-fi
series latest episode---from his reunion with
Carrie Fisher ("It was no big deal") to the
franchise s unwavering popularity ("For me,
it s old news").
However, when Ford brings up his new co-
stars, he lights up like the Millennium Falcon
charging through hyperspace.
"The new, young actors Daisy Ridley and
John Boyaga were well cast, well directed and
are huge talents," he said, his gritty voice lifting,
during a recent interview. "They come off
really well in the movie. They carry the movie."
After more than 30 years, Ford is reprising
his role as smart-aleck smuggler Han Solo in
director JJ Abrams Star Wars: The Force Awak-
ens, out December 18.
The iconic character, who hasn t been seen
on screen since celebrating the fall of the
Galactic Empire in 1983 s Return of the Jedi,
serves as an unlikely mentor to scavenger Rey
(Daisy Ridley), defector Finn (John Boyega)
and pilot Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac) as they
team up to take on masked adversary Kylo
Ren (Adam Driver) and his minions.
While the film has been cloaked in an unpar-
alleled level of secrecy, Ford guaranteed that
fans can expect the same Solo they fell in love
with from the original Star Wars trilogy.
"The shorthand is that he s older and wiser,
but his bones are the same," Ford said. "He s
not selling real estate now. He s the same guy
---only with the passage of 30 years. While
we do not sit down and describe what he s
been doing for those years, we do discover in
the context of the story what the complications
have been in his life."
Ford, who infamously wanted George Lucas
to kill off Solo in Return of the Jedi, had a
"why not?" attitude about suiting back up as
Solo. He wasn t surprised by Disney s Death
Star-sized plan to revive the franchise after
acquiring Lucasfilm in 2012 for more than
US$4 billion. The studio is planning to release
a stand-alone film about a young Solo in 2018.
"If you make a huge investment in a product
and it pays off, there s wisdom in seeing
whether the well has run dry," Ford said. "If
the well has run dry, (expletive) admit it and
go on to something else. This well has not
dried, especially when you introduce new dis-
coveries, which Daisy Ridley, John Boyega,
Oscar Isaac and Adam Driver represent."
Despite embodying the intergalactic
scoundrel in three films, the Indiana Jones
star didn t feel the need to provide Force Awak-
ens filmmakers with much insight into Solo,
who is back alongside shaggy sidekick Chew-
bacca (Peter Mayhew).
"They wanted to know if I didn t like some-
thing, and we would talk about ways to fix
it," Ford said. "That s what we do. It s a col-
laborative process. There wasn t much.
(Lawrence) Kasdan was back. He was one of
the writers from the original films. He has a
keen understanding on how the beast works,
so I think they produced a script that---in my
mind---was very easy to work with."
Once he was back in a galaxy far, far away,
Ford s reprisal was stopped short on the second
day of production last year when a door on
the Millennium Falcon set outside London fell
on him. He broke his left leg and was grounded
for months. The unexpected time off proved
more frustrating than fruitful.
"I had been ready," he said. "I didn t have
much to think about. I think it gave JJ some
more time to think about some of the scenes."
After his work on the postponed production
eventually wrapped up, Ford endured another
mishap involving a flying machine. The aero-
nautical aficionado suffered several injuries
when his vintage plane s engine failed and
crashed in Santa Monica, California.
The accidents haven t stopped Ford from
returning to the sky.
"Oh, (expletive) no, I fly all the time," said
Ford, with his eyes glowing again." (AP)
This photo provided by Lucasfilm
shows Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca
and Harrison Ford as Han Solo in Star
Wars: The Force Awakens. The movie
opens in US cinemas on December 18.
PHOTO: FILM FRAME/LUCASFILM VIA AP
FORD promises older, wiser Solo in Force Awakens
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