Harrison Ford back to star wars with ‘Ender’s Game’

Ford trains children and teenagers how to protect the Earth from an alien invasion in 'Ender's Game'

SPACE MAN. Ford has played pivotal roles in 'Star Wars' and 'Cowboys and Aliens'

LOS ANGELES, USA – More than 30 years after “Star Wars,” Harrison Ford has returned to inter-stellar space battles in the big-budget sci-fi spectacular “Ender’s Game.”

The 71-year-old insisted it was the human relations rather than hi-tech wizardry that drew him to the project, developed from a novel by Orson Scott Card and directed by South African “X-Men” director Gavin Hood.

“It doesn’t matter to me whether I go back into outer space or not,” he told reporters in Beverly Hills, ahead of the movie’s US release on Friday, November 1. “The job is the same and I don’t have any sort of genre preferences.”

“I’m just looking for a good story, a good character, whether Earth-bound or not.”

Ford plays Colonel Graff, who trains a group of children and teenagers on how to protect the Earth from an alien invasion.

The best bet to save the world is Ender, played by Britain’s Asa Butterfield, who starred in Martin Scorsese’s 2011 drama “Hugo.” Timid but with an exceptional gift for military strategy and tactics, Ender becomes the hero of a film in which inter-galactic battles are played out in space and in a simulated game world.

It is almost Ford’s first sci-fi film since the last “Star Wars” movie, apart from a role in 2011’s “Cowboys and Aliens.”

Science fiction has changed quite a bit since director George Lucas released the initial trilogy of the cult movie franchise in 1977, Ford explained. “When we were making ‘Star Wars,’ they were putting together space ships out of plastic model kits of cars and boats and trains and gluing them all together, and then putting them on a stick and flying them past the camera.

“And it worked. It was fine. Add a little music and you believed that big spaceship coming over your head,” he said.

Computer Generated Imagery (CGI) can achieve incredible effects, but the veteran Hollywood actor warns they should not be abused.

“Often in those cases I feel you lose touch with the human characters and what it is that they would feel and how they might feel, and that’s still the most important part.”

Dismisses the label ‘icon’

Ford is busier than ever, with 3 other films this 2013: “42,” “Paranoia” and “Anchorman 2: the Legend Continues.” But the legendary “Indiana Jones” actor, while one of the most famous actors in the world, dismisses the label “icon.”

“An icon means nothing to me. I don’t understand what it means to anybody, actually. It seems like a word of convenience.

“It seems to attend to the huge success of certain kinds of movies that I did, but…I don’t know what an icon does, except stand in a corner quietly accepting everyone’s attention,” he joked.

The hit 1985 novel on which the “Ender’s Game” film is based has a lot of violence, which is instrinsic to its story. But the movie’s director said he approached that aspect carefully.

“I wanted the violence to feel real but not indulged,” Hood told Agance France-Presse.

“I hope I found the balance…the story is about (Ender) struggling with his own capacity for too much violence. So if you don’t show the boy with the capacity for too much violence, you can’t tell the story. It’s tricky.”

Young actress Hailee Steinfeld, nominated for an Oscar in 2011 for her role in the Coen Brothers’ “True Grit,” plays Ender’s best friend Petra. 

“I don’t think Gavin’s intentions — anybody’s intentions — were to make things violent. It was just to make [the film] exciting and adventurous and daring,” she said.

Watch the ‘Ender’s Game’ trailer here:


Harrison Ford photo from Shutterstock

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