27east.com – “I don’t believe in genres, I believe in acting.”
One would think this would be a grand statement at the end of a rant from a theater major in college criticizing modern movies, but it’s actually a personal preference when it comes to selecting the films that make up the nearly 20-year career of Aaron Eckhart.
He may not believe in identifying a film by a label or type, but most people do, and he is familiar to fans of a variety of genres: action (“The Dark Knight,” “Olympus Has Fallen”), drama (“Rabbit Hole,” “In the Company of Men”), comedy “Thank You for Smoking,” “The Rum Diary”). And those who get out to the movies in 2016 are bound to see him in one or more of several new films: He started the year with an action movie in the spring (“London Has Fallen”), followed by two dramas in the fall (“Sully,” “Bleed for This”), and will finish the year with a horror movie in the winter (“Incarnate”).
This past weekend at the Hamptons International Film Festival, Mr. Eckhart pulled double duty promoting a featured film in the festival (“Bleed for This”) and being interviewed for “A Conversation With…” If he’s being honest—though it’s hard to tell with that same charm and verbal etiquette he brought to his Golden-Globe-nominated role as a hotshot tobacco lobbyist in “Thank You for Smoking”—he doesn’t even understand the purpose of genres.
“I think genre is categorizing something that doesn’t need to be categorized,” Mr. Eckhart said. “As an actor, if somebody dies in a movie you have to determine how you feel about that. If you’re having a relationship breakup, or you’re having a baby or whatever, it doesn’t matter what genre you’re in, you’re an actor in a movie and I’ve always been confused by that.”
Variety – Few actors have balanced blockbuster movies with independent film as successful Aaron Eckhart, who first burst into the public consciousness with a blistering, unapologetic turn in Neil LaBute’s 1997 feature debut, “In the Company of Men.” That star-making role earned Eckhart an Independent Spirit Award and set him on a path of complicated but often lovable antiheroes. Since then he’s gone on to appear in such beloved franchises as “The Dark Knight” and the “Olympus Has Fallen” series while delivering acclaimed turns in smaller-budget fare like “Thank You for Smoking” and “Rabbit Hole.”
This is shaping up to be a really great fall for you.
I have to say, I’m enjoying it. I’m really proud of the movies and really proud of the people I worked with and I feel very, very fortunate to have worked with Clint and Tom and Ben and Miles. So I’m having fun.
How did the ‘Sully’ role come your way?
It really came out of the blue. Clint’s casting director kind of went to bat for me and showed Clint some of my stuff and really put his neck out. Then Clint gave me a call. I’ve always wanted to work with Clint and obviously been a huge fan of his since I grew up with his films. It was the first time in a long time I was sort of like a little kid in a candy shop. I was so happy.
|“It was the first time in a long time I was sort of like a kid in a candy shop.”|
While discussing his new film Sully, Aaron reveals what he and co-star Tom Hanks did in San Francisco to simulate the experience of flying. He also chats about the reconstructed plane that the actors shot their scenes in, the technical language he and Tom had to learn and deliver in a believable way once the cameras started rolling, and finally, the real life events the film is based on.
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Aaron Eckhart gets star-struck. Just like the rest of us. Only he doesn’t ask for autographs (or selfies).
Witness his reaction when he was shooting “Sully,” the story of how Capt. Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger (Tom Hanks) landed his US Airways jet in the Hudson River in 2009 after the plane was struck by geese. Hanks, says Eckhart, “is a sweetheart.”
Here’s Eckhart’s very cute recollection of one very pivotal day playing Hanks’ copilot.
“We’re in a Clint Eastwood movie with Tom Hanks. You get the best of the best. We’re shooting on Fifth Avenue. There’s nobody on Fifth Avenue but us. Imagine that. All those cars are ours. All those people are ours. That’s the power of Clint and Tom.”
But there’s more. He exits his trailer. And what does he witness?
“And then I see it. Clint and Tom are talking to Steven Spielberg.”
You know. Just another day in the workplace.
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In 2009, Capt. Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger made an emergency plane landing on the Hudson River and saved the lives of all 155 passengers and crew. Director Clint Eastwood’s Sully which debuts in theaters Friday and stars Tom Hanks as the title pilot, Laura Linney as his wife, Lorrie, and Aaron Eckhart as his co-pilot, Jeff Skiles — brings that event to the big screen, and looks at the heroism of it, and criticism that surrounded it.
“Everybody knows the story of what happened at ‘Miracle on the Hudson,’” Eckhart says of the script, written by Todd Komarnicki and adapted from Highest Duty by Sullenberger and Jeffrey Zaslow. “What they don’t know is that there was a [National Transportation Safety Board] hearing that went on for quite a long time to see if it was the right thing to do, who was at fault if anybody, and it was quite traumatic. These pilots, as well as the staff and passengers, suffered [post-traumatic stress disorder] after.”
He continues on the scrutiny that ensued, “You expect if somebody lands a plane with dual engine failure into the Hudson and saves everybody’s life that they would walk away scot-free, and it’s not always the case. You have to then go to a hearing to investigate whether or not you did the right thing, if you could have saved the plane, if you could have landed at Teterboro or JFK, so there’s a lot that goes into it.” There’s a lot on the line too, like jobs, pensions, and reputations.
Continue reading at the source: Entertainment Weekly