‘War for the Planet of the Apes’ Star Woody Harrelson Opens Up on ‘Star Wars’ Changes

Actor talks to THR about changing directors on Han Solo prequel during filming.

July 13, 2017 11:46 am
Woody Harrelson Gives Revealing Interview About New 'Star Wars,' 'Cheers'
Actor Woody Harrelson attends a screening of 'War For The Planet Of The Apes' at The Ham Yard Hotel on June 19, 2017 in London, England. (Dave J Hogan/Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)

Actor Woody Harrelson’s has made the Kessel Run from America’s favorite bartender on Cheers to the Star Wars universe, but it hasn’t always been a smooth ride.

Of late, he’s turned up in a number of Hollywood blockbusters, including a pair of Hunger Games movies and will appear in War for the Planet of the Apes, which hits theaters Friday. (He’s also set to star in the yet-untitled Han Solo spinoff, which recently underwent the wrong kind of drama,  a directorial change during filming.)

Harrelson just gave a career-spanning interview to The Hollywood Reporter, during which he touched on a number of topics. RCL has curated a list of our five favorite nuggets from the interview below:

On Acting in the Latest Star Wars Spinoff:
“Definitely (Star Wars) has more secrecy than anything ever. You get an e-reader; you don’t get a script. They give it to you, and you give it back after you read it. But I was like, ‘I’ve got to be with my family, I got to go home.’ I’d been home in Maui one week since November. But I met with (then directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller) one night, and we hung out and we went over to Matthew Freud’s and played pingpong and just had a great time. They were really good guys. I’ve been enjoying it (since then), especially because we just went to (shoot at) the Dolomites in Italy. (Co-star) Thandie Newton said, ‘It’s like being at camp ’cause you got everybody together,’ and we had a couple of epic parties.”

On Ron Howard Replacing the Movie’s Original Directors:
“He’s a wonderful guy. And we did shoot one day with him—we had to shoot because Thandie (Newton) had to leave. We start again July 12. I think I read some stuff where people were worried about the fate of this movie. I wouldn’t worry. The Force is still very much with it.”

On His Life Up Until Now:
“I look back at myself and say, ‘That guy is an asshole,’ to be perfectly frank. I was a pretty happy guy, but I also had a lot of rage. When I was a kid, I had real emotional problems. I would have these tantrums. (Later) I used to fight a lot. I used to go to bars and fight the guys I thought were bullies. I’ve got scars everywhere.”

On His First Time Getting Arrested:
“My first arrest, the police were really brutal. I was 20 or 21, and I was jaywalking, me and a friend, and this cop flags us over, asks to see our ID. My friend showed his ID, but I said, ‘I don’t have my ID,’ which I did, of course. And he says, ‘Have you been out to some of these bars? Then you had to have an ID to get in.’ I go, ‘Oh, good point.’ So I pull it out, and as I pull it out, he goes, ‘Don’t lie to me again, punk!’ And then he grabbed me, smashed me against the wall a couple of times.”

On Life Before Cheers:
“I was anonymous and poor before that show.”

The InsideHook Newsletter.

News, advice and insights for the most interesting person in the room.