Itchy Wool and Broken Wings

"Making sequels ain't like dusting crops, kid." Or at least, I think that's how the line went?

Chances are, if you've touched the internet or viewed television at any point over the last couple weeks, you've heard that Harrison Ford broke his leg the second week of June while filming on the latest Star Wars sequel at the Pinewood Studios. This morning, "news" is out there that Ford is up and walking again using "a prosthetic limb" (thanks Daily Mail) - I put both in quotes because the concept of news and the use of such a strange term as prosthetic limb in the headline makes it as attention grabbing as possible, I'm sure.

A while ago, I had written an open letter to my heroes after a viewing of Spielberg's War Horse (unfortunately now that the site has migrated the old blog has been taken offline otherwise I could link back to the past). In short, the letter suggested that the likes of Steven Spielberg and George Lucas, who were responsible for so much of my childhood, had gotten too comfortable in their more recent days. Having people around them that never say no and never being challenged by anything had made them complacent and the quality of their films was mirroring that state.

Take a look at a film like Jaws, which is so incredibly effective because the challenges of the mechanical shark forced Spielberg to get creative with how he was playing with the audience. Fear in the unseen. Now, a couple weeks of VFX to the cheapest bitter and you can have all the Bruce you can handle in a film like Jaws.

This is the long way of going about saying it, but Ford breaking his ankle (though you never wish ill of people that they break their legs requiring surgery) might be a good sign of things to come. It's a challenge for the creative team that they have to work around and, to use the cliche, forces them to think outside the box to figure out a workaround. Bluntly, it forces the Above the Liners on the call sheet to move outside their comfort zone and not rely on the easy way out.

Films like Wizard of Oz, the first X-Men film, and countless others have had to deal with major adversity (let's be honest every film has to deal with some sort of adversity which is the main reason a go-to question in EPKs is "what was the biggest challenge of _____"). And for some reason, even though it's at the expense of poor Harrison Ford's leg, I see this as yet another positive toward the film we'll be seeing next December.

Posted on July 7, 2014 and filed under Movies.