ALL THE NEWS & BUZZ FROM HOLLYWOOD
HARRISON FORD LUCKY TO BE ALIVE
WHEN HARRISON FORD took off from Santa Monica Airport in his WWII vintage plane on March 5, the setting was picture-perfect for one of the movie star pilot’s cherished scenic afternoon getaways: cloudless blue sky, scant wind and panoramic views of the Pacific below. But when engine trouble forced the 72-year-old Star Wars actor into an emergency crash landing in a densely populated area of L.A., the scene seemed plucked straight from one of Ford’s action movies. “I saw a plane descending as I was running, and then I heard a ‘boom’ when it was falling,” says Ben Hubley, who was jogging nearby at the time. A longtime pilot respected in aviation circles, Ford expertly guided the struggling plane onto a nearby golf course, clipping a tree and coming down hard on the No. 8 tee. Visibly stunned and covered in blood from a five- to six-inch gash in his scalp about the “size of a pancake,” as an eyewitness on the scene told PEOPLE, Ford was rushed to a nearby hospital.
Immediately, Ford’s wife, actress Calista Flockhart, 50, raced to the hospital, arriving just after the ambulance. Over the next few days, she left only to take care of their 14-year-old son Liam. “Calista spent most of the weekend by Harrison’s side,” says a source. “She arrived early every morning and returned home late every night. She was under stress.” Those who know Flockhart and Ford, who wed in 2010 after more than eight years together, aren’t surprised by the dedication and paint the once-unlikely duo as one of Hollywood’s most enduring love stories. “They routinely go everywhere together as a couple,” says a source who knows them socially. “Despite his enormous fame and their age difference, they are a tight, superloving, down-to-earth family. Flying is something they’ve shared. This whole thing must be terrifying.”
While Ford’s publicist said his injuries, which reportedly include a broken pelvis, “are not life threatening,” it remains unclear when Ford will be able to leave the hospital. What is certain? It’s unlikely he’ll hang up his pilot wings anytime soon. “[Flying is] where I feel engaged and comfortable and free,” the actor told People in 1998. As for Flockhart, she’s grown to share his passion. “Calista likes the process, she likes what she sees from the air, she likes seeing me happy,” Ford has told PEOPLE. “I think a lot of it has to do with that she loves to see me doing something I love.”
How He Survived
AN AVIATION EXPERT BREAKS DOWN THE CRASH
Ford’s crash landing has in fact helped solidify his status as a respected pilot. “Harrison did everything perfectly,” aviation expert Rick Dake says of how Ford handled his plane’s apparent engine failure. In World War II, “a lot of new pilots crashed that [same model of] airplane. If the engine stopped, the plane would want to flip over on its back. Harrison Ford made a 180-degree turn with the engine seizing up on him. That alone is testament to the great ability he had.” Dake suspects the actor made a calculated decision to attempt to land on the golf course. (Locals have protested how close the airport is to houses.) “He was able to keep that plane away from the houses and land it with the least impact on the community,” he says. “He was doing exactly what an excellent aviator would do.”
GEORGE & AMAL CLOONEY THEIR NEW LIFE IN NEW YORK
They already spend time in London, Los Angeles and Italy, and now George Clooney and his wife, Amal, are adding New York City to their itinerary. The couple, who wed in Venice in September, will be spending quality time in Manhattan this spring, with Amal, 37, taking a position as a visiting law professor at Columbia University and George, 53, shooting the Jodie Foster-directed thriller Money Monster on Wall Street. Not that they can’t spend time apart in the Big Apple. On March 2 George went solo to the city’s SeriousFun Children’s Network gala (where he declared Amal “the smart one”), and he lunched with pal Bill Murray the next day. But they still find time for date nights. On March 6 the pair got cozy at tony Café Boulud, where they dined on black truffles. “They were seated in an alcove of the restaurant,” says an observer. “It was very romantic and private. They were laughing and talking the whole time. They were having a wonderful time.”
CATCHING UP WITH TINA FEY
THE STAR, 44, NARRATES DISNEYNATURE’S FILM MONKEY KINGDOM, OUT APRIL 17
Which monkey in the movie is your favorite?
“Maya and then Grandpa. He’s really old. Well, he’s 40, and in monkey world – and in Hollywood – that’s old. He’s really cute.”
You worked with Disney! Are you pro- or anti-princess?
“Frozen of course is a really big deal. I love Disney, and there’s a lot in our house. From princesses up to Disney XD, my two girls are fully immersed in the lifestyle.”
When it comes to nature, are you Jane Goodall or Carrie Bradshaw?
“We have family in Ohio, so that’s the farthest into the wild that we get. But both of my kids love animals – Penelope spends a good portion of the day pretending to be a cat. They’re city kids, so they’re always begging to go to the country.”
Best part of doing a voice-over?
“You can do it in your pajamas, and you don’t have to comb your hair.”
Baby on (Surf) Board
When she was just 13, she lost her left arm in a shark attack while surfing. But a month later, Bethany Hamiton was back riding waves. Now six months pregnant, she’s still not ready to hang up her board. “I don’t know how much longer I’ll be able to surf because my belly is starting to poke out,” says Hamilton, who wed youth pastor Adam Dirks in August 2013. The only thing that makes the 25-year-old Kauai resident “nervous” about motherhood is one-armed diaper changes. “Luckily,” she says with a laugh, “in Hawaii you can just let your kids run around naked.”
NIKKI REED MY BROTHER, MY HERO
Nikki Reed may be the famous one in her family, but it’s her little brother Joey, 15, who is the star to her. “He’s a really rad kid,” she says. “He inspires me every day.” One of the reasons: teaching her about people with autism. “He’s high-functioning,” she says of Joey, who was diagnosed with the disorder at age 2. “He wants people to know that not all people with autism are the same. He’s his own person. He doesn’t want a label. More than anything, he is just a kid.” Ever since Joey was young, his family (which includes parents Cheryl and Seth and brother Nathan) has always focused on his strengths. “He’s one of the most honest, loving, sensitive and transparent kids I’ve ever known,” says Reed, 26. “He’s insanely smart and has a remarkable memory.” As spokesperson for the Lindt Gold Bunny Celebrity auction (lindtgoldbunnyauction.com), which benefits Autism Speaks, Reed says, “People make assumptions about autism. But you have to treat each person as an individual—that’s really a priority for Joey.”
INSIDE THE SEQUEL
With an army of young-adult-lit fans and $100 million in receipts, last fall’s Maze Runner was a hit. Its sequel, Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials (out Sept. 18), aims to top Act 1 by dropping Thomas (Dylan O’Brien) and his weary band into a lawless territory called the Scorch as they confront WCKD, the all-powerful organization playing with their lives. Though the details are top secret, O’Brien teases one major change: “There will definitely be more female characters!”