Harrison Ford's Reddit AMA Bits: 'Blade Runner' 2, Han, Indy & More
From James Cameron to Harrison Ford, they're getting everyone on Reddit. Over the weekend the other big Reddit AMA (aka Ask Me Anything) participant was legendary actor Harrison Ford, best known as Han Solo, Indiana Jones, Rick Deckard, Jack Ryan, President James Marshall, Colonel Graff. He explains that he was recently a "correspondent for Years of Living Dangerously, a new Showtime docuseries about climate change," and answered a number of fan questions for an hour. He covers topics on Blade Runner, Star Wars, Indiana Jones, even Anchorman, Expendables, and plenty more. Recap his highlights below.
Though he has been a bit odd at in-person appearances recently, Harrison Ford's responses here seem clear and concise. These are some of his best answers. To start: "Who did you prefer portraying, Han or Indiana?"
I think Indiana Jones was a lot of fun to do because of the places we went to and the adventures and the action. But Han Solo was also a huge part of my life.
Why did he make (or rather "what drew [him] to") Jon Favreau's Cowboys & Aliens?
Oh, I always liked cowboy movies, and there aren't a lot of ’em being done anymore. So I loved scifi in the beautiful desert.
What about Anchorman 2 - when (and why) did he take that role?
It was goofy. I hadn't seen Anchorman, it was only one day's work, and I knew that it was very popular, and I admired the talents of the people involved, so I went to do it and had a great time, I enjoyed it. I still haven't seen it though.
Asked: "What's the best and what's the worst set you've ever been on?"
The set for Blade Runner was maybe the hardest set I've ever worked on because I think we worked 50 nights in a row, and it was always raining.
Asked: "Did you ad lib Han's famous line 'I know'?"
It's not really an ad lib, it was a suggestion, and movie making's a real collaborative process at its best. You don't ad lib it, you suggest it and then you try something in rehearsal and then you agree. So it was my suggestion, because I thought it was more of a character line than what was written, but the director and Carrie and I all thought it was a good idea at the time so we did it.
On the Blade Runner sequel with Ridley Scott and if there's any potential:
I'm quite curious and excited about seeing a new script for Blade Runner if in fact the opportunity would exist to do another, if it's a good script I would be very anxious to work with Ridley Scott again, he's a very talented and passionate filmmaker. And I think it would be very interesting to revisit the character.
Asked what his favorite Indiana Jones movie is?
I don't have favorites. I just love the work, and I'm glad that the films were so well-received. But I don't really have favorites.
On why he decided to do a role in The Expendables 3:
I was on my way to Indonesia to do Years of Living Dangerously, and halfway around the world. And the location for Expendables was right on the way, and they asked me for a relatively short period of time, and it seemed like fun. I hadn't seen the films but I looked one of them and i thought it was kind of funny, so I thought why not?
On the quintessential geek question: "Who shot first? Han Solo or Greedo?"
I don't know and I don't care.
On the other quintessential geek question: is Deckard a replicant?
I think that it's a wonderful storytelling mechanism for that question to be left unanswered.
On if he keeps any movie props from anything he has worked on:
No, I don't keep any, I'm not terribly nostalgic and I don't have a lot of things from my movies. And certainly don't have a lot of them around my house. Those are separate worlds for me.
Asked: "What movie quote do you get asked to do the most?"
"Get off my plane."
On the controversy of his falling out with Chewbacca:
Ha. Well that was a skit for Kimmel, I think. With his writers, the idea behind it was that Chewbacca had borrowed my fictional wife.
"Any injuries / weird occurrences / funny stories on any of the Indiana Jones sets?"
Oh, let's see. On the first Indiana Jones movie, I tore an ACL in one of my knees, can't remember which knee, the scene in which I was fighting the big German mechanic on an airplane called a flying wing, I was run over by the landing gear and injured my knee, but I can't remember which one it was. Lots of bumps and injuries along the way.
Funny stories? We were shooting in Tunisia, and the script had a scene in which I fight a swordsman, an expert swordsman, it was meant to be the ultimate duel between sword and whip. And I was suffering from dysentery, really, found it inconvenient to be out of my trailer for more than 10 minutes at a time. We'd done a brief rehearsal of the scene the night before we were meant to shoot it, and both Steve and I realized it would take 2 or 3 days to shoot this. And it was the last thing we were meant to shoot in Tunisia before we left to shoot in England. And the scene before this in the film included a whip fight against 5 bad guys that were trying to kidnap Marian, so I thought it was a bit redundant. I was puzzling how to get out of this 3 days of shooting, so when I got to set I proposed to Steven that we just shoot the son a bitch and Steve said "I was thinking that as well." So he drew his sword, the poor guy was a wonderful British stuntman who had practiced his sword skills for months in order to do this job, and was quite surprised by the idea that we would dispatch him in 5 minutes. But he flourished his sword, I pulled out my gun and shot him, and then we went back to England.
On being asked what "skill" he has learned from acting:
Well, I don't know that I've learned any real skill, but what I love about acting is learning about different lives, so when you play a policeman, you will often spend some time with policemen that can help you understand them and what goes on in the real life of a policeman, same with a doctor, a surgeon, a scientist, a secret agent, so you get to learn something about different people's lives every time. Research is very important to me.
On how he really feels about snakes!
I actually like snakes! When I was young, I was a boy scout nature camp counselor, and one of our projects was collecting snakes and creating an environment for them, so I'm quite familiar with snakes and think they'r fantastic creatures.
Providing some words of wisdom for aspiring actors:
You know, all I can say is that it's rewarding and challenging, and the competition is so strong that the chances of being successful in that area are statistically daunting. But most people give up, or are unable to sustain themselves until they have the opportunity to become successful which means to get work, so the only thing I can say is try to figure out how not to give up. If it's a true ambition and you really have a passion for storytelling, try and figure out how to hang in there.
Finally, thanking everyone in return for loving him:
Someone said thank you for being a part of so many childhood films: Well, thank you. I really appreciate that. It's a privilege to be able to be involved with people as talented as the people I've had the luck to work with, and it's just been a great experience for me, and I'm glad that so many of the films I've had the luck to do were films that could be enjoyed by families together.
For the rest, head to Reddit or find only his answers right here. Thanks to SlashFilm for the tip. Damn, what a snappy reply to the Greedo/Han "who shot first?" question. "I don't know and I don't care." I guess not. That said, the rest of his answers are much more thoughtful and he seems like a genuinely caring guy by the end of it all. I'm glad he participated in this and although I wish he answered so many more questions about so many other things, all of this is quite fascinating. I can only hope we'll see Blade Runner 2 one day, in the meantime we can always look forward to Expendables 3 with Ford. Or maybe not. Your thoughts?