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Harrison Ford ‘s as close as you get to royalty around these parts, so there was little doubt he was the main attraction on this first day of Comic-Con – surprisingly only his second trip to the annual San Diego geekathon*. He was in town to talk about Ender’s Game , the upcoming adaptation of Orson Scott Card’s “very, very clever boy goes to war” novel, and his first trip into outer space since Han Solo danced to an Ewok band.
So how does his Colonel Hyrum Graff, the gruff commander who pushes child genius Ender Wiggin to his limits to help fight Earth’s war against alien “buggers”, compare with the legendary Mr Solo?
“They’re nothing alike,” he said at the Ender’s Game press conference. “Graff’s a very complex character that is charged with an awesome responsibility who recruits and trains the young Ender Wiggin, and really this construction of the story faces a lot of moral issues that are involved in using young people for warfare and the complex moral issues are really part of Graff’s story. Ender doesn’t really face so much the issues of morality until the end of the film when he knows what’s happened to him, but Graff is aware of his moral responsibilities all though his part of the story. I think the book deals with a lot of very complex issues of social responsibility and the moral issues that one faces when one is part of a military establishment. I was just delighted to be involved in a film with such high ambition and such talented people involved. I think Graff is a much more complex character than Han Solo – which doesn’t mean that I regret Han Solo.”
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The question of Card’s controversial views on gay marriage – his anti-gay marriage standpoint has led to calls for a boycott of the movie – was also raised. “You say the question is for me? I’m so grateful,” said Ford with perfect dry comic timing before saying: “I think none of Mr Card’s concerns regarding the issue of gay marriage are part of the thematics of this film, and he has written something, I think, that is of value to us all to consider moral responsibilities. I think his views outside of those that we deal with in this film are not an issue for me to deal with, so I have really no opinion of that issue. I am aware of his statements admitting that the question of gay marriage is a battle that he lost, and he admits that he lost it. I think we all know that we have all won, that humanity has won, and I think that’s the end of the story.”
* His first, trivia fans, was for Cowboys And Aliens .
Ender’s Game is released in the UK by Entertainment One on Friday 25 October.