Harrison Ford and his farewell to Indiana Jones: the 80 years of the carpenter who took over the whip

About to turn 81, next July 13, Harrison Ford was encouraged to wear his leather jacket and hat again and inhabit the world of Indy, the intrepid archaeologist who with his whip combines intensity and intelligence with comic touches and a lot of physique. Is about Indiana Jones and the dial of fatethe fifth and last film in the saga that made him one of the undisputed stars of Hollywood and is in theaters today. Not only that: he is the protagonist of two series with very good reception. He is a therapist who fights against Parkinson’s disease in Shrinking of Apple TV+ and a patriarch of a Montana ranching family in 1923 from Paramount+.

Thus he managed to overcome the prejudices of the passage of time and found a way to continue in force. Today he accumulates a fortune of 300 million dollars and he does not plan to stop acting. In an interview with the American television presenter Ellen DeGeneres, she told her secret. “Bicycle, tennis and a diet without red meat or flour.” Even at the conference in Cannes, where the film was presented, a journalist pointed out that it is still sexy and he replied: “I have been blessed with this body. Thanks for noticing.” A classic response from a man who chose to build his career as a carpenter, step by step, with noble materials and a lot of effort. And that he prefers to keep his private life indoors, something he demonstrates in every interview he gives, where he finds subtle ways to escape each of the questions that make him uncomfortable and several bad words escape.

Beyond that his films have collectively grossed nearly $10 billion worldwide and he has regularly earned more than $20 million per film.has never won an Oscar. He did not direct any films nor does he have a production company (he only earned three producer credits on more than 45 films). He was never interested in running away from the place of a good hero or demonstrating in the industry that his story arc could include other types of characters., as a villain (“I’d rather be part of a positive statement,” he said). What he did do was return to characters many years later, as he did with Han Solo, Indiana and Rick Deckard, in Blade Runner. In addition to working with the most prominent directors in Hollywood: George Lucas, Steven Spielberg, Ridley Scott, Francis Ford Coppola, Roman Polanski and Robert Zemeckis.

From amateur carpenter to being chosen by George Lucas

Harrison Ford, the amateur carpenter who found fame.

harrison ford was born in Chicago and is the older of two brothers. His passion for acting came after achieving mediocre grades in college and finding a partner in drama. Together with his youthful sweetheart, Mary Marquardt, whom he married in 1964 and had two of his five children, Benjamin and Willard, they moved to Los Angeles where the actor’s apprentice was trying to make a name for himself. His first roles didn’t even merit him appearing in the credits, until George Lucas signed him to american graffitiyou. In parallel, Ford began doing carpentry work to support his family. And it was thanks to that category that without it being destined to do so, he ended up doing a casting to become a Han Solo, one of the most endearing characters in Star Wars.

Legend has it that he was carrying out construction work at the entrance to Francis Ford Coppola’s office at Goldwyn Studios and that one day Lucas walked in with Richard Dreyfuss, who was being considered for starwars, and asked Ford to read in front of the other actors a few lines from a science fiction film. It turned out to be the handwriting of Han Solo and, beyond the fact that the director did not want to repeat actors with whom he had worked, there was no doubt. Two weeks later, the path of one of the legends of Hollywood would begin.

beyond that Star Wars: A New hope (1977) was not the success that was expected at the time and he did not want to sign to be part of the original trilogy, the saga became one of the most successful of all time and had six more films, prequels, derivative series and a universe that continues to expand. Even Han Solo could have, in Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (2015) an ending Harrison had flirted with: poetic and tragic.

But it wasn’t Star Wars that took it to another level but another character, that of Henry Walton Jones, Jr. (better known as Indiana Jones). The story is similar: Lucas did not want Harrison to be his workhorse and when Steven Spielberg asked him about him, he told him that he was not the right one to become Indy. But… the director of ET he asked to see his work and once again Lucas gave in to the inevitable. They had gone through the heads of the filmmakers: Sam Elliott, Christopher Guest, David Hasselhoff, Tom Selleck.

the first film Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) was the start of a string of box office hits. This tough man decided not to have stuntmen, and faced most of the action scenes that can be seen in the saga: although many times he ended up hurt. He faced snowboards, horses, stunts, he has even asked to be hit for real: he did not want it to be a choreography but to be hit directly in the face.

At 38, Harrison met his true alter ego, a man who wants to do good, and he continued to do so in three consecutive films. What followed next were several years of malaria: From a reliable box office titan, he stumbled after the hits stopped coming, then returned, triumphant, in the highly anticipated sequels to his biggest films.

Characters That Don’t Rust: Han Solo, Indiana Jones, and Rick Deckard

The first time that put on the Indy suit again was in 2008 with Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Although the film did not convince critics, seeing Harrison again, at 56, playing the archaeologist was attractive enough for millions of people to join him in the cinema. It grossed $790.6 million against a budget of $180 million.

In 2015, Harrison rejoined a story from his past: he took up Han Solo many years later. along with the original cast of Star Wars: Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill also said yes. The spirit of the smuggler pilot took over the screen but in search of redemption. In 2017, JJ Abrams convinced the actor to appear in a cameo in the Episode VIII: The Last Jedi. That same year, Harrison resumed another character, that of Deckard, in bladerunner 2049, a film that thrilled fans of Ridley Scott’s futuristic epic.

Now, the new Indiana has arrived, a film that had been announced in 2019 but was delayed due to the pandemic. Regarding this closure, Ford told Esquire: “I had always wanted a final chapter in the story. We started thinking about it many years ago. My ambition, all of our ambition, was to come up with a story that dealt with the reality of his age because he was a very physical character. I wanted to see it diminished and revived by whatever the story was and whoever the characters were. And when we got the narrative that felt right to everyone, we moved on.”

The talks between Harrison and Mangold, who took the place of Spielberg (producer of the film), revolved around finding a way to approach the character. “The mistake you can make in movies is when someone is middle-aged, but the movie continues the farce that they’re not that old,” Mangold expressed. “Every challenge he faces is through the reality that someone that age would be dealing with.”

After closing his stage as Indiana Jones, he will join the UCM playing Thaddeus Ross, who was played by William Hurt. The actor said that he wanted to get into Marvel to try new things, and he will become the president of the United States in Captain America: New World Order, as revealed by Kevin Feige, president of Marvel Studios.

“I would be a better father if I had been less successful”

Harrison is the father of five children and speaks little about them. Speaking to Esquire in May 2023, he said he would still “take a bullet” for any of his children. And he admitted that he would “probably” make a better father “if he had been less successful as an actor.”

He had the first two heirs when he was 20 years old and were the product of his marriage to Mary Marquardt. The eldest Benjamin, 56, is a successful chef and owner of Ford’s Filling Station restaurant and has two children. His brother, Willard, 54, also took a path outside of show business. He is an entrepreneur and owner of Strong Sports Gym, a Los Angeles-based gym; he is the father of two.

Harrison Ford in Indiana Jones 5
Harrison Ford in Indiana Jones 5

After 14 years, Harrison separated and years later he formalized again with Melissa Mathison, with whom he was married between 1983 and 2004 and with whom, in addition to a millionaire divorce, he had two children. Malcolm, 35, a professional musician who plays in a band that has opened for great figures like Bob Dylan, and Georgia, 33, his only daughter and the one who seems most interested in following in her father’s footsteps in the world of acting. . Although he has remained quite secretive about her family, it is about her that he has spoken the most since he suffers from epilepsy. “It’s devastating when a loved one suffers from a disease like this,” she said teary-eyed at the FACES gala celebration in New York to find a cure for epilepsy and seizures. Several years passed before the diagnosis was found and it was a hard road for her family.

“A doctor friend of mine prescribed the medication and the appropriate therapy and she has not had a seizure in eight years,” he said and assured: “I admire her -Georgia- for many things, her perseverance, her talent, her strength. She’s my hero. I adore her.”

The youngest of the 5 is Liam, 22, a son he adopted with his third wife Calista, with whom he has had a relationship since 2002. The young man bears his mother’s surname, since he was adopted by Flockhart in 2001, when she was 37 years. “I’ve always wanted to adopt a child and it fills me with happiness to have been blessed with a beautiful and healthy son,” the actress said in a statement at the time. A year later, she began a relationship with Ford, who did not hesitate to add him to his family. “I have five kids in all, so this isn’t my first rodeo. It’s obvious that I’m getting older, but it’s not something I think about too much. I have a 9-year-old at home and I feel like a father to a 9-year-old,” the actor told The Independent in 2010 when asked about paternity after 65.

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Harrison Ford and his farewell to Indiana Jones: the 80 years of the carpenter who took over the whip