The “Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny” press conference was largely a obsequious affair on Saturday, with one reporter telling Harrison Ford “You’re still sexy” and asking about his workout routine, and another saying wore an “Indiana Jones”-shirt that says to the actor, “Thank you for existing.”
When IndieWire got the mic, we chose instead to reach out to producers Kathleen Kennedy and Frank Marshall to get their take on the WGA strike, noting that a film like “Indiana Jones” would not have been able to go into production right now. “I would like to see this whole situation resolved by really being in an environment where people can talk about what are some really complicated issues right now that are affecting the entire industry,” Kennedy said. “But when it comes to recognizing the importance of writing, I think everyone here demonstrates that you can’t do any of this without good writing. So all of us who make movies, who create anything on television, are in full support — I know most people are in full support — that writers get what they deserve.
Kennedy also hinted at the conversation about AI technology being central to the ongoing negotiations. “I think what’s the meta issue here is how it’s impacted by an industry that’s in the midst of change, both technologically and just the basic aspects of how we work,” he said. “It’s going to take time, and I think that’s what everyone is preparing for: taking the time to try and ensure that everyone can articulate what those feelings are and try to come to a resolution on alignment.”
Director James Mangold also stepped in. “Of course, we’re not writing now,” he said. “Writers are often, because they are the first in the process, the first to be forgotten. I think that’s true in so many parts of our lives in their struggle to get what’s right for everyone.
Ford, meanwhile, has asked some telling questions about his decision to walk away from the franchise at age 80. “Isn’t that obvious?” he asked. “I need to sit down and get some rest. But I love working and I love this character and I love what he’s brought to my life.
He also addressed the anti-aging technology used in the film to make him look like the character’s previous incarnation. “This iteration of technology has evolved to the point where it feels very realistic to me, and I know it’s my face. It’s not Photoshop magic. This is how I looked 35 years ago because Lucasfilm has every frame of the film we’ve made together over the years. This process of scientific mining of this library has been put to good use. It’s just a gimmick unless supported by the story and sticks out like a sore thumb if it’s not real.