Harrison Ford chokes back tears at ‘Indiana Jones’ Cannes premiere

CANNES, France — Just the sight of Harrison Ford turned a roomful of journalists into weepy, excited fans. When Ford’s name was announced at the Friday morning news conference for the premiere of his fifth and final outing as Indiana Jones, reporters in attendance broke into a standing ovation. When he appeared to be choking back tears while answering questions – which was often! – An audible “awww!” The whole room shook.

“Thanks for being there!” A Brazilian journalist yelled at Ford at the end of his question.

The beloved movie icon was emotional throughout Thursday night’s “Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny” premiere and the following day’s press events. Just before the screening began, he gasped when he was presented with a surprise honorary Palme d’Or after playing a reel of his life in movies. He burst into tears as the crowd showered him with applause. When Presser’s moderator said how moving it was to see him on stage at the premiere, he struggled for words when asked how it felt.

“Indescribable,” Ford laughed, shaking his head. “It felt … I can’t even describe it. It’s unusual to see a kind of memorial when your life has passed. The warmth of this place, the sense of community, is so welcoming. And it makes me feel good.

In addition to thanking his wife Calista Flockhart, his “Destiny” director James Mangold and actors Phoebe Waller-Bridge and Mats Mikkelsen, Ford addressed the audience directly while accepting his Palme d’Or. “You have given my life purpose and meaning, and for that I am grateful,” he told the crowd.

At 80, Ford looks as spry as ever — with some very obvious CGI help — in a scene that shows him chasing a horse through a parade and New York City subway, petal-to-the-metal-ing rickshaws. The very narrow streets of Tangier in Morocco and dodging the flying spears from the ancient Romans and the bullets of the Nazis. Critics were mixed on the new indie version, which introduced Waller-Bridge as the artifact-seeking daughter of Indy’s British partner Basil Shaw (Toby Jones), who seems to be searching for an ancient Greek time-travel device for mercenary reasons, but whose real motivation, of course, is to complete her father’s legacy. Variety He called it “the unhappy part of the nostalgic Hogham”. The Hollywood Reporter He said it was “obviously bogus”. Audiences at the 8:30 a.m. screening on Friday faced an organizational fiasco, leaving many ticket holders in the rain and filling the theater with non-ticket holders. An American reviewer commented on his awkward colleagues from the night before: “It’s so funny! It’s like they’ve forgotten not to be Kubrick!”

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Ford couldn’t care less about reviews. The actor was beaming at the after-party at the premiere party for the film, which featured plenty of finger food and walls painted like vistas in Morocco. He stayed late in a secured VIP area, applauded, shook hands and gave a few minutes of his time to each well-wisher, including Disney chairman Bob Iger, Karlie Kloss and Gemma Chan from Waller-Bridge. A nearby party was having animated conversations, punctuating her points with a lit cigarette in her hand.

Ford’s good mood, mixed with plenty of gasps, continued the news conference, most notably in an exchange with Australian journalist Helen Barlow, who declared to the actor, “I think you’re still pretty hot.” She then asks him about the scene where he takes off his shirt and still shows off his eight-pack abs. How healthy is he and can he ride a horse?

Ford: “Yes, I can ride a horse if they’ll let me. Thank you. I forgot everything until you can ride a horse.”

Mangold helped, asking what he was doing to stay in shape.

Ford broke into a cheeky Indiana Jones smile, leaned into his microphone and whispered, “Look, I’ve been blessed with this body.” Ford waited until the laughter died down before delivering his kicker.

“Thanks for looking out.”

The film opens worldwide on June 30, but this two-screening run at Cannes was actually a Harrison Ford appreciation tour. As Ford thanked his fans, many of them were there to thank him. “Indiana Jones” was not in competition at the ceremony; It’s a gift to moviegoers who grew up on Ford’s movies and were willing to brave the crowds for long periods of time in high heels. before the rest of the world.

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At the press conference, the cast and Mangold took turns pouring out their praise for Ford and the franchise. “I saw ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark’ when I was 17, and that’s one of the reasons I’m a movie director in an upstate New York mall on opening day,” Mangold said. Shannette Renee Wilson (“Black Panther”), who played a CIA agent in the 70s, spoke about the films that introduced her to American culture as a Guyanese immigrant. Boyd Holbrook, who plays a Nazi henchman, explained that the films inspired many to make films. “But before I wanted to be an actor, I wanted to be Indiana Jones,” he said.

Mostly, though, the news conference left Ford touchingly reflective and grateful. He talked about why he rejected several versions of the script earlier. It was because he wanted to complete five films that were eligible for the franchise. “I wanted to see this man who relied so much on his youth and youthful vigor — the weight of life on him. I wanted to see him need reinvention and support, and I wanted him to have a relationship that wasn’t a normal kind of flirty movie relationship,” Ford said.

When Mangold directed the script and cast together, it felt like destiny, he said. “Everything is coming together to support me in my old age,” he said. “I love work. So I love to work and tell stories. And then he chokes back talking about how much everyone has poured themselves into the film. (Awwwwsaid the journalists around me.)

He looked back at how Almost didn’t act as an indie First, how his success wasn’t really luck with talent – because many talented actors don’t get their shot. “I’ve been lucky to work with incredibly talented people, to find my way into this group of geniuses and not get kicked out when I didn’t do as well as I wanted,” he said.

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He talked about whether he keeps the hat from the film. (No, it’s being auctioned for charity. He has one of his past films, but it’s really the experiences he treasures.)

He laughed off a journalist’s suggestion that he might have one more Indiana Jones film. “Don’t you know?” he said, to roars from the crowd. “I need to sit down and get some rest. But I love the job. I love this character and I love what it has brought to my life.

When a reporter asked him how it felt to see a younger version of himself in some movies, he marveled at the technology but was not nostalgic. The indie, about fighting the Nazis in World War II, was fashioned from actual footage Lucasfilm had archived over the years. Amazing to look at, Ford is 80 years old and doesn’t matter.

“I’m very happy with it, but I don’t look back and say, ‘I wish I was that guy again,’ because I’m not,” he said, before leaving the news conference and meeting about 300 fans gathered in the hallway waiting for his departure. Ford himself Stopped for as many minutes as possible, signed autographs and took selfies.

“You know what? I’m very happy with the age,” he concluded. “I love being old.”

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