THIS MONTH AT EMPIRE
CAN YOU IMAGINE what it would actually be like to be Harrison Ford? As a Star Wars and Indiana Jones-obsessed sever-year-old, I sure as hell tried. To my little movie and comic-book lovin’ self, he was basically a god: a totem of masculinity that flew spaceships, got the chicks and had a giant dog who could tear your arms off as a best friend (yes Luke had a lightsaber, but he was a dork compared to Han Solo’s cooler-than-hoth-during-a-severeblizzard space pirate). And Indiana Jones? He had a whip and a sweet hat — ‘nuff said.
Although he’s appeared in dozens of great films over the decades (Witness and The
Fugitive being two non-lucasfilm affiliated faves), it’s nice to see the now 75-year-old Ford ease back on the grumpiness and lighten up in his old age, performing somewhat of a career victory lap by returning to some of his most iconic characters (respectful note to Steven Spielberg: please, fortheloveofgod, make the next Indy film so mind-meltingly great that we forget all about Kingdom Of The Crystal Skull). As evidenced by our on-set visit to Blade Runner 2049 (p. 32), the actor is relishing playing replicant-hunter Deckard for the first time in 35 years (“the best script ever sent to me” Ford says of the film, which should push your Anticipation-o-meter into the red).
Elsewhere in the mag, we see some of cinema’s most visionary directors back doing what they do best. Returning from the world’s shortest I’m-done-directing-films retirement is Steven Soderbergh, blessing us with his new crime caper Logan Lucky (p. 40). Featuring Adam Driver sporting a prosthetic arm (note to self: compile list of greatest movie characters with prosthetics, starting with the One-armed Man from The Fugitive and ending with Eddie ‘No-nose’ from Baby Driver) and Channing Tatum as a couple of hicks planning a heist at a car rally, this looks like it could be one of the funnest flicks of the year.
“What else?” I hear you wonder, thanks to my heightened ESP abilities. There’s Netflix’s Marvel team-up series The Defenders (p. 46); The Fifth Element director Luc Besson giving us an insight into his career (p. 52) and unleashing some of the most insane aliens ever in
Valerian And The City Of A Thousand Planets (p. 58); an exclusive chat with Stephen King about The Dark Tower (p. 64); Samuel L. Jackson and Ryan Reynolds teaming up — hopefully to swear lots — in The Hitman’s Bodyguard (p. 70); a blow-by-blow behind-the-scenes account of the bonkers making of Nic Cage schlockbuster Con Air (p. 76) and, last but not least, some of moviedom’s biggest names reveal their crappest ever jobs to us. (Mine? Putting tiny plastic bits in fridges on a mind-numbing assembly line. It was not chill.)
‘Til next time: I love you. (My ESP allows me to hear your appropriate response: “I know.”)
JAMES JENNINGS EDITOR