Josh Harnett

Pearl Harbor

Interviewed by Jane Crowther

Does Pearl Harbour mean anything to young Americans today?

It’s meaning a lot more to me day by day because of the documentaries and the books coming out at the moment - that’s either a huge coincidence or it has a lot to do with this film! But you read about two pages on it in junior high school so I had to learn a lot, talk to survivors and read a couple of books.

Was portraying a world war two pilot like living out your childhood fantasies?

Yeah, I got to kiss Kate Beckinsale. I didn’t know Kate when I was a child but I had visions that were remotely similar to the parachute scene!

Did you have any input into your character?

We had a really kind of open relationship and we got along with the script and everyone else to make what we thought would be the best decisions for the story.

You had to go to boot camp to prepare for the role – how was that?

I didn’t get the ‘brass balls’ award! We had a sergeant who just said to me at the end "you did a good job" and that was about all the compliments I got. I come from a pretty liberal background and I didn’t have any military ambitions, but it gave me a lot more respect for the people who actually do it. Really when it came down to it I learnt my limits physically and that’s not something you want to know at 21!