Harrison Ford Was a Carpenter When George Lucas Noticed Him and Cast Him in Star Wars
Back in the day, Harrison Ford did carpentry to provide for his family — and that’s how George Lucas found him while looking for an actor to portray Han Solo.
Today, Harrison Ford is a legend, an icon, and one of the biggest household names in the movie industry. This charismatic man has the lead roles in the biggest franchise on his track record, and he’s universally loved by the audience and critics alike. It’s impossible to imagine the history of cinema without Ford’s grumpy face, isn’t it?
However, life wasn’t always this simple for Harrison Ford — and, much like every other aspiring young actor, he was struggling to kick-start his career back in the day. His approach, however, was very different from the others as instead of taking every chance and becoming an extra in every TV show, Ford decided to be picky.
Even when he had next to no role offers, young Harrison was adamant: he only wanted to play the roles he was comfortable with, and such offers were really scarce. So, to provide for his family, Ford picked up carpentry — this job allowed him to have an income and stay afloat while looking for his perfect role in his free time.
“Through carpentry, I fed my family and began to pick and choose from among the roles offered. I could afford to hold out until something better came along. But I never gave up my ambition to be an actor. I was frustrated but never felt defeated by my frustration,” Ford shared with Vanity Fair.
George Lucas was interviewing potential Han Solo actors when he noticed a young man doing carpentry at the entrance to the offices and decided to ask him for assistance with the auditions. Harrison Ford was supposed to help the interviewed actors with their lines but instead, he made an impression on Lucas himself.
“I was working on an elaborate portico entrance to Francis Ford Coppola’s offices, working as a carpenter when George walked in with Richard Dreyfuss to begin the first of the interviews for Star Wars. Somehow, that rang a bell with George, and I became, eventually, Han Solo,” the actor explained.
This is like the perfect “don’t give up on your dreams” story, isn’t it? Ford was doing the job he wasn’t happy with to feed his family, auditioning for acting jobs, and rejecting every offer that didn’t seem proper to him…and in the end, he found his massive breakthrough role thanks to the very principles he held so dear.
What a story, indeed!
Source: Vanity Fair via YouTube