Star Wars legend Mark Hamill says Harrison Ford is just like John Wayne in one significant way. Both Mark Hamill and Harrison Ford kicked off their careers in Hollywood in earnest with George Lucas’ Star Wars movies, beginning with A New Hope.
Over the course of working on the movie, the younger Hamill looked up to Harrison Ford and his general air of experience. In fact, speaking with Esquire, Hamill says that, even before his Hollywood status, Harrison Ford was ‘instantly iconic’ and someone he wanted to emulate.
“I was wide-eyed and inexperienced,” recalled Hamill. “Harrison arrives, and I’m telling you—from day one—just like Luke did, I looked up to him as someone who had a firmer grasp of all the elements than I did.”
Continuing on with his recollection of Ford’s presence, Hamill said, “I thought, ‘This guy’s like … Steve McQueen? Gary Cooper? John Wayne?’ He was instantly iconic, and yet the world at large didn’t know who he was. I just thought, ‘This guy’s major’.”
Having your presence and aura likened to that of Steve McQueen, Gary Cooper, and most of all John Wayne is pretty impressive, and Hamill clearly had some foresight because Harrison Ford’s name now undoubtedly sits alongside theirs as true Hollywood royalty thanks to his best movies.
Just as John Wayne is known for defining his era of movies with some of the best Westerns, Ford is a legend of the ’80s and ’90s within the adventure movie genre, also appearing in the likes of Blade Runner. Recently, Ford has also been dabbling his toes in the Western genre with the Yellowstone prequel 1923, and the connection goes deeper as Wayne had a secret cameo in Star Wars.
Ford’s own time on Star Wars ended with a cameo in The Rise of Skywalker, and he’s also closing the book on another iconic character with the upcoming Indiana Jones 5 release date.
For more on Ford and his new movies, check out our guide to the 1923 season 2 release date and read our Indiana Jones 5 review. Or, find out more about the new Star Wars movies, before learning about why Harrison Ford’s favorite movie is this Robert Duvall classic.