As his new movie Paranoia earns early pans, and he joins the cast of “The Expendables 3,” Harrison Ford talks fanboys, fat suits, and the industry’s urge to revive his many iconic roles with the New York Times Magazine. Highlights below.
On the difference between his leading man days in the 1970s-90s, and his “character actor” career now:
The form of film in the ’70s and ’80s and early ’90s, when I
was working more and playing leading-man roles, was such that I always felt the
burden of having to carry the audience along. Of making sure that they
identified with the emotional condition of the character. And knowing that if
they lost sympathy or investment in that character, that happened at the peril of
the film. The pleasure of being a character actor is that you don’t have to
think about that.
On the level of engagement in fanboy properties:
It’s another form of engagement. I think the success of
Comic-Con is based on the partnership between the fans and the service
providers, the entities — I won’t necessarily call them filmmakers — that
supply the film product that supports their particular interest, whether it’s
vampires or science-fiction fantasies or Transformers or whatever is going on.
How his classic films would play at Comic-Con today:
Everyone would be ahead of it, and everybody would know what it was, and it would be no fun at all. But people still went to movies in those days. People went to movie theaters. It was a community experience, and that was part of the fun. Now people see a movie on their iPad, alone, with interruptions for snacks.