Interview with Harrison Ford

Harrison Ford recently sat down with local college journalists to talk about “Firewall,” his audience and getting older.

Q: Placing your name above a marquee basically guarantees you an audience. Why are you reaching out to students? A: To be frank, I’ve continued to age. It’s a fact of life. I’m interested in people approaching their own age, [I’m] conducting myself like a business. I need to reach out to people your age to sell a film, to ensure that money is well-spent.

Q: If there was one film you could have been a part of, what would it be? A: ‘To Kill a Mockingbird,’ a rare film that confronted a social issue that changed the way people think.

Q: How do you choose your film roles? A: [It’s like] going to war and fighting your way out. I choose them because they have the potential to be good. Intensely engaging. The reward is good work.

Q: Are you affected by the critics? A: I don’t change what I’m doing based on one person’s opinion.

Q: What is the most important acting quality you try to portray on screen? A: To come off as real … as emotionally realistic as possible.

Q: You’re known for your blockbusters, but is it difficult to make a film that tackles serious issues? A: It’s very difficult to make an argument that changes how people behave.

Q: Of all your movies, do you have a favorite character? A: No, that’s like asking what’s your favorite child.

Q: Have you ever considered getting behind the camera? A: No, it takes too long. And it doesn’t pay as well.

Q: Does your vision for the movie ever differ from what translates on screen? A: Well, the first reading of the script is important. I’m informed by that first experience whether or not I understand the character or not. But that doesn’t always mean it stays the same.

Q: How do you continue to improve as an actor after all these years on-screen? A: “No limit for better” was something a Russian woman once told me. I’d like to agree with her.

Q: Besides acting, what are you passionate about? A: I’m passionate about my family and human rights.

Q: What do you look for when choosing roles? A: I’m looking for a good story, different from those I’ve recently done. I serve an occupation as a storyteller.

Q: Do you ever find yourself at odds with the director, where your vision and his are different? Do you have any influence? A: It’s different under every circumstance. I’m not comfortable with an imperial style of directing. [But I’m] likely to be blamed more than the director if we fail. Actors become brands. [We’re] responsible to those that come to the theater. [But I] have an influence in a constrained and comfortable way.

– Jeff Miranda contributed to this interview for The News

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