“There was so much technology that we were doing that I was a little intimidated,” Harrelson said of “War for the Planet of the Apes.”
Woody Harrelson will no longer be at war with himself, even though he looks back on past roles with disappointment.
The “Champions” actor reflected on his role as the villain in 2017’s “War for the Planet of the Apes” and admitted he felt “stiff” in the role.
“When things are going well, I don’t feel stiff. But there are performances where I’m like, “Why couldn’t I go out, no matter what I do?” Ten years later, I think of something I should have done in a scene and I want to rip my head off,” Harrelson said. The New York Times Magazine. “Planet of the Apes” was one of those times where there was so much technology in what we were doing and I was a little intimidated. If I were to do this part again, I could do it twenty times better.”
Harrelson added, “There are more roles where I think back to, ‘Why didn’t I try this? Why didn’t I do it? Why didn’t I step into a completely different character? But it’s probably best to let these things hang. They can haunt you.”
The “Natural Born Killers” star went on to reflect on his decades-long career, saying that in 1997, he did five films in a row and it took a toll on his psyche and eventually the roles he was offered.
“I was so burnt out. It was my fault,” Harrelson said. “I could have easily turned down some projects, but I ended up losing my mojo. Whatever it was that made me want to act just disappeared. And right at the end of that time, my second daughter was born, and I wanted to spend time with those girls. But I’d be a fool not to admit that I’m probably less popular. I made five bombs in a row. You make a movie that fails. But two, three, then five?”
He continued: “That’s when — I can’t remember if it was 2001 or 2002 — when I said, ‘OK, I’m ready to get back into it.’ I’m thinking, “I don’t know if there’s going to be a ticker-tape parade, but there’s definitely going to be a warm response.” Nothing. No answer.”
Harrelson shared that he “even agreed to do this movie that wasn’t good” just to restart his career.
“I’m not going to get into anything specific, but it was stupid,” Harrelson said. “I meet with the director and do it — they’re looking for about $500,000 — and then the guy goes off with someone else! He didn’t call. Nothing. I’m like, oh man, things got tough. But slowly and surely I started to get back into it and things got better.”
Later in the interview, Harrelson took aim at the production protocols for COVID-19, claiming that with the pandemic three years in the making, no one should be “forced to get vaccinated” or wear a mask.
“I’m like, let’s end this nonsense. It’s not fair to the crews,” said the “Zombieland” star. “I don’t need to wear the mask. Why should I? Why should they be vaccinated? How is it not up to the individual? I’m not supposed to talk about this (expletive). This makes me mad about the crew. The anarchist part of me doesn’t feel that testing, masking and vaccination should have been forced. This is not a free country. I’m actually talking about the crew. Because I can get away with wearing a mask. I can test less. I’m not in the same situation as them, but it’s bad. Three years ago. Stop.”
Harrelson echoed the same sentiment during his own “Saturday Night Live” opening monologuecomparing the COVID vaccine companies to the “world’s biggest drug cartels” who conspired to “buy up all the media and all the politicians and force all the people of the world to stay locked in their homes.”
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