Why Is Harrison Ford Such A Beloved Actor?

Harrison Ford gave millions of fans a big scare this week, when he crashed his vintage plane on a southern California golf course. For a few hours we didn’t know how serious his injuries were. Those who didn’t grow up watching the veteran playing some of the most iconic roles in movies may not understand what all the fuss was about, so we will explain why he is such a beloved actor.

Ford, who is 72-years-old, is the quintessential hero in movies. He landed in America’s consciousness when took on the role of the intergalactic scoundrel, Han Solo in the epic Star Wars original trilogy starting in 1977, when A New Hope was released.

Harrison Ford in Star Wars
Image via Lucasfilm

He became an instant fan favorite because of his character’s nonchalant personality and the rest is history, as they say. Following his success in the George Lucas saga, Harrison Ford took on another popular hero-like role when he starred as Indiana Jones in Steven Spielberg’s Raiders of the Lost Ark, which also became a trilogy.

The fact that he is easy on the eyes, also helped Harrison Ford become one of those actors that not only fans followed insistently, but studios wanted. Out of all the starring lineup for Star Wars, Ford is the one who has had the most successful career and has reinvented himself time after time.

Harrison Ford in The Fugitive
Harrison Ford in 'The Fugitive' (Image via Warner Bros.)

In Hollywood, it’s very easy to be typecast and playing Han Solo certainly could have led Harrison Ford to be such. However, as flashy as the character was, the actor proved that he had more acting chops that many gave him credit for.

Harrison Ford was a favorite of George Lucas and the pair had worked together in American Graffiti, prior to Star Wars and also in the Indiana Jones trilogy. This partnership was instrumental in paving the path for bigger and better things.

While doing the Star Wars sequels and playing Indiana Jones — for which he did most of his stunts earning him a reputation — Harrison Ford starred in Blade Runner, but he also had some intensely dramatic roles, such as the ones in Witness, Presumed Innocent, Regarding Henry, and The Fugitive. He also starred as a kick-ass retired CIA operative Jack Ryan in Patriot Games and Clear and Present Danger the adaptations of the famous James Clancy novels.

Harrison Ford in Patiot Games
Harrison Ford Patriot Games (Image via Paramount Pictures)

Increasing his hero image in movies, Ford took on the role of the President of the United States in the action thriller Air Force One, in which he has to fight off Soviet terrorists while on an overseas trip. Most of the roles Harrison has played have been very well received by fans and have become legendary in modern times.

Throughout his career Harrison Ford has proven that he is one of the hardest working actors in Hollywood and is tremendously respected and admired by his peers. Fans love him for the obvious dedication he shows and the interesting roles he has played. The veteran continues to play in action films and will reprise the role that launched his career into stardom, Han Solo, when Star Wars: The Force Awakens hits theaters on December 18.

[Image via Lucasfilm]