JACK HUS­TON

Albuquerque Journal - Parade - - WALTER SCOTTS PERSONALITY - Email your ques­tions for Wal­ter Scott to per­son­al­ity@pa­rade.com

He may not be as Hol­ly­wood fa­mous as his aunt, ac­tress An­jel­ica, or his grand­fa­ther, ac­tor-di­rec­tor John, but that’s about to change for the star of the new Ben-Hur, open­ing Aug. 19. Hus­ton, 33, will em­bark on a sweep­ing, epic ad­ven­ture in the up­dated big-screen saga of a Jewish no­ble­man whose life takes sev­eral dra­matic turns, in­clud­ing a life-or­death char­iot race and an en­counter with Je­sus of Nazareth.

What’s fresh about the new Ben-Hur? There’s this won­der­ful mes­sage of be­ing able to let go, move on, take a step for­ward, for­give and be mer­ci­ful. I don’t like to watch stodgy, sod­den, san­dal movies; I feel like a mod­ern au­di­ence has to be able to re­late. Ju­dah Ben-Hur is go­ing through a cri­sis in his life. He doesn’t be­lieve in God, per se. He ques­tions his faith, he ques­tions his life. There’s some­thing very re­lat­able to it.

Charl­ton He­ston, who played the role in 1959, left some re­ally big foot­prints. This is very much my own in­ter­pre­ta­tion. I loved that ver­sion, but when I read this one, it didn’t feel like we were step­ping on the san­dals of pre­de­ces­sors.

Were you an ex­pe­ri­enced horse­man be­fore this movie? I’ve rid­den all my life, but noth­ing pre­pares you for char­i­ots. Every time you see us with the horses, it’s us with the horses. No an­i­mals got hurt. The only time we would im­ple­ment any CGI [ef­fects] was for some­thing that couldn’t be done.

What movies make Hus­ton nos­tal­gic? Go to Pa­rade.com/hus­ton to find out.

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