By Gene Hackman

This morning I was sorting through some mail that had piled up and I came across a letter from a fan. In the letter, she asked a question that I’ve been getting a lot from various people. "Where have you been, Gene Hackman?"

By now you’ve probably noticed my recent absence from movies and I guess that I owe you all an explanation. I wish that I could say that I’ve decided to spend my time painting or writing historical fiction. Or I wish that I could tell you that I’ve had it with the politics of Hollywood and have decided to return to my theater roots. But none of that is true.

Fact of the matter is I’ve just been playing a lot of Xbox 360.

Like, a real whole lot of it. I don’t return my agent’s calls. I blow off my kids and I also ignore Clint Eastwood when he wants to go paint balling. Some days I don’t even shower or change my clothes. I just like to get a bag from Morgan Freeman’s weed guy, roll that shit, light that shit, smoke it. Then I tear up some Gears Of War 2.

(Above: Morgan just bein' Morgan.)

I’d always been aware of video games but I’d never really played any until I worked with Will Smith on Enemy of the State. He was OBSESSED with Madden ‘98 so we’d play in his trailer. I sucked at first but before long my Dallas Cowboys owned his Eagles. Of course he’ll never tell anyone about that. Ha ha. Go ahead and ask him. It’ll piss him off.

(Above: Big Willie Style went out in '98.  What whaaaaaaaaaaat?!)

The sports games are all right. Like, FIFA is pretty cool but I’m really into the shooters nowadays. I love the Call of Duty games and Halo 3 was my jam. But lately I’m all about Resident Evil 5. I usually think that fast zombies (or ganados or whatever) are lame but this shit is off the hook. I love using the shotty when they get up close. The way they just drop cracks me up every time. I punched a zombie’s head off today. What did you do??

If I had to choose between Call Of Duty or RE, I think I’d have to go with RE. Don’t get me wrong, shooting Nazis and the Vietcong is always fun but there’s something really dope about landing a headshot on the undead or an alien or an undead alien. You know what? If I do go back to films, I’m giving Uwe Boll or the dude who did AVP a call. Those guys know how to make a picture.

And Guitar Hero: Metallica rocks my balls off. "Kill ‘Em All" and "Master Of Puppets" are some of my favorite albums so it’s a lot of fun to shred to those. I listened to those albums on repeat to get amped up for my performance in The Quick and the Dead. Ask Sharon Stone if you don’t believe me. Her trailer was beside mine and she was always complaining about the racket. Plus, TWO KICK PEDALS!!! If my knees weren’t so arthritic, I’d be all over that.

(Above: Me attempting to wail on "Enter Sandman" for reals.  I'm better on Xbox.)

One thing that sucks though is my wife has been has been nagging me about my new hobbies. Last week she had Dustin Hoffman, Bobby Duvall and Franny Coppola over for at intervention.

Of course that just devolved into them trying to convince me to switch to PS3. Yeah right. That’s about as likely as a Welcome To Mooseport sequel.

I told them that I appreciate their concern but they don’t need to worry about me. Between the ill payday for my Lowe’s voiceover work and my Bat*21 residuals still pouring in, the Hack Man is living large these days. So my wife just needs to chill.

Maybe I’ll get her a Wii. I can see her getting into that.

Sometimes I do miss acting. Like, the actual process of creating a raspy-voiced character is really gratifying for me. I also like having an excuse to grow a mustache. But those days really are behind me. I’ve made my mark on cinema with movies like Heartbreakers and Superman IV: The Quest For Peace. I don’t feel like there is anymore for me to achieve as an actor. So to all my fans and those wondering about me, I ask you not to grieve over my absence. I’m just hanging around, getting blunted, and waiting for Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2. Fall 2009, baby!!

And oh yeah, if you ever want to find me on Xbox Live, my gamertag is HackManiaK.


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