Surprise Me!


2017-12-04 2 40 Vimeo

Whether brandishing a whip and outsmarting Nazis or helping overthrow a Galactic Empire, Harrison Ford is one of the most celebrated Hollywood hunks. Born on July 13th 1942, the action star has had a slow, but steady career spanning over 50 years. A self-described “late bloomer” Ford did not develop an interest in acting until his junior year at Ripon College Wisconsin when he took a drama class as a way of meeting girls. In 1964 he travelled to Los Angeles to apply for a job in radio voice-overs. Though he was unsuccessful, he remained in California and eventually signed a $150 a week contract with Columbia Pictures’ New Talent program, playing small roles in films. His first screen debut was in 1966 when he played a bellboy in Dead Heat on a Merry-Go-Round. Sadly the role was uncredited and there is little known of his “extra” work as he was dropped to the bottom of the hiring list when he offended producer Jerry Tokovsky after playing this part. Despite the misstep, Ford managed to secure a role in A Time For Killing the following year where he was also credited for the first time. He debuted as “Harrison J. Ford” with the J being a meaningless way to avoid confusion with silent film actor who had appeared in over eighty films before dying in 1957. Ford has said that he only discovered the silent star’s existence when coming across his name on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Soon enough Ford dropped the middle initial and began working for Universal studios, playing minor roles in television series including Gunsmoke, Ironside, The Virginian, The FBI, Love, American Style, and Kung Fu throughout the ‘60s and ’70s alongside minor non-speaking roles in Western Journey to Shiloh (1968) and Michelangelo Antonioni’s Zabriskie Point (1970). However, he became unhappy with the roles he was being offered and began a second career as a self-taught carpenter to support his wife and two small sons. While working as a carpenter, he became a stagehand for The Doors, built a sundeck for Sally Kellerman, and a recording studio for Sergio Mendes. Soon after this he was hired to build cabinets for George Lucas who cast him in a supporting role in American Graffiti (1973). After his success with The Godfather, Francis Ford Coppola hired Ford to expand his office and gave him small roles in his next two films: The Conversation (1974) and Apocalyspe Now (1979). Unsurprisingly, Ford’s work as a carpenter landed him his first starring role as the charming rogue Han Solo in Star Wars: A New Hope (1997) when he was hired by Lucas to read lines and the director was won over by his portrayal of the smuggler. The film was an incredible success and catapulted Ford into stardom overnight. He went on to reprise his role for the subsequent sequels The Empire Strikes Back (1980) and Return of the Jedi (1983). Ford wanted Lucas to write Han’s death into either sequel saying “that it would have given the whole film a bottom”, but Lucas refused. Ford would finally get his wish in 2015 with The Force Awakens. After the success of Star Wars Ford skyrocketed into the role of leading man when he was cast in the title role of Indiana Jones in Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981): a Lucas/Spielberg collaboration. Having already worked with him in two productions Lucas was reluctant to cast Ford, but relented when Tom Selleck was unable to accept the role. He then donned the iconic fedora and whip for two immediate sequels; Temple of Doom (1984) and The Last Crusade (1989) and then once more in 2008 when he played an aging Indie in Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Between his battles with Nazis and aliens, Ford expanded his repertoire with a multitude of dramatic and comedic roles including Heroes (1977), Force 10 From Navarone (1978), The Frisco Kid (1979), Frantic (1988), Mosquito Coast (1986), and –of course- leading roles in Blade Runner (1982) and Witness (1985). He continued to withdraw from the hunky rogue image of Star Wars and Indiana Jones throughout the ‘90s with a run of actions and dramas including Regarding Henry (1991), Patriot Games (1992), The Fugitive (1993), Clear and Present Danger (1994), Sabrina (1995), Air Force One (1997), and What Lies Beneath (2000). While his work as a carpenter rewarded him with iconic roles, Ford has been rewarded in his acting career with many honours. He’s received numerous BAFTA, Golden Globe and Academy Award nominations, received the AFI Lifetime Achievement Award in 2000, was awarded the Cecil B. DeMille Award in 2002, got a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2003, received the Jules Verne Spirit of Nature Award in 2006 for his work in wildlife preservation, and was awarded the first ever Hero Award in 2007. Author: Paul G. Roberts Film maker: Thomas Parkinson To make sure you get all the news on the New Girls Of Victoria's Secret 2016 and more sign up for FIB's weekly EDM at

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