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'I find action acting enjoyable,’ says Harrison Ford

Posted June. 17, 2023 08:02,   

Updated June. 17, 2023 08:02


"I didn't want to sidestep the reality of my age, or of Indiana Jones'. I believed we could bring a satisfying closure to the series by portraying the story of an aged Indiana Jones."

Hollywood veteran Harrison Ford, aged 81, has reprised his iconic role as 'Indiana Jones' after 15 years. The fifth and final installment of the 'Indiana Jones' franchise, titled 'Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny,’ is set to premiere in Korea on June 28, two days before its North American release. About the upcoming film, Ford has announced, "This will be the last time I portray Indiana Jones."

Ford has played the eponymous hero in every installment since the series' inception with 'Raiders of the Lost Ark' back in 1981. Director Steven Spielberg, who has been at the helm of the series until now, contributes to this latest work as an executive producer.

During a video interview on Friday, Ford appeared in a suit and green tie. Despite appearing slightly smaller and his shoulders having shrunken compared to his prime, Ford’s distinctive, intense gaze remained the same.

When asked about his decision to return to the Indiana Jones franchise after a decade and a half, he expressed, "I have always had high hopes for this series." He noted, "If we were to revisit the movie, I was determined to portray an aged Indiana Jones. I found it compelling to explore whether Indiana Jones, with time, would become just an elderly man, continue to be the adventurer, or perhaps be a blend of both."

In this latest outing, Indiana Jones is once again the central character. He isn't depicted as the young, whip-wielding adventurer of yesteryears but as an aging professor nearing retirement. Amidst his struggles with absent-minded students in his university lectures, Jones embarks on another adventure when he accidentally uncovers Archimedes' Dial, which reveals a rift in time.

Despite his gray hair and age, Ford is seen running, rolling, and flying in the movie. His movements may be slower, his body more creaky than in previous installments, but his eyes twinkle with the same enthusiasm at the start of a new adventure. There's a profound overlap between the character of Indiana Jones, the adventurer who remains vigorous despite his age, and Ford himself, an actor whose passion is undimmed despite his advancing years.

On performing action scenes at the age of 80, Ford said, "Truthfully, I find action acting enjoyable." However, he added with a hint of mirth, "Even when I wanted to, I was prohibited from performing in scenes that could be potentially risky. Safety precautions were the cause, but I would always feel so frustrated." He reflected on the enduring popularity of the 'Indiana Jones' series, describing it as "not just an action movie, but also a family-friendly film."

He believes its charm lies in its ability to engage multiple generations over time. "It seems to have become a narrative passed down from one generation to the next," he said. "Thanks to that, I've been able to consistently engage with new fans of the franchise."

Ji-Sun Choi aurinko@donga.com