For countless moviegoers, Harrison Ford is a veritable Hollywood titan. Known for iconic roles spanning from Han Solo in "Star Wars" to Indiana Jones, Ford has solidified his status as a cinematic legend. But what is the man like behind the glitz and glamor of stardom? For this, we turn to an equally acclaimed figure in the film industry, Dame Helen Mirren.
From an Early Encounter: A Glimpse of Ford's Nature
Mirren, now 77, reflects on her first meeting with Ford, vividly capturing the essence of a man grappling with the complex realities of sudden fame. "In his essence, Harrison Ford is the same person he was when I first met him," Mirren tells PEOPLE.
She recalls his intense impatience with the "annoying sides of the great fame that had settled upon him" — think adult sycophancy and the invasiveness of publicity. Yet, he remained "immeasurably patient and kind to starstruck kids so excited to see their hero." Ford's "profoundly protected" privacy and his meticulousness for work were two characteristics that struck Mirren deeply.
Likening his acting to the carpentry Ford was known for, Mirren was deeply impressed with his understanding and use of the techniques of film acting. The budding actor was "professional, guarded, and mysterious," stirring a blend of fascination and intimidation in Mirren.
A Reconnection: A More Open and Emotional Ford
Fast forward three decades, and Mirren paints a subtly different picture of Ford. "30 years of amazing life happened to both of us, and now we are reconnected," Mirren explains, now finding Ford "not guarded, unafraid of feelings and expressing them; generous, funny, as professional as ever, and still impatient with stardom." In Mirren's eyes, the evolution of Ford's personality has only served to bolster his legendary status.
His relatability and authentic humanity are what distinguish him. Ford is "the kind of guy you would call when your car got stuck in a ditch," Mirren says, adding that he would also "completely understand why you were so upset about your cat dying and shed some tears with you." According to Mirren, Ford isn't just a "god-given movie star," but a "chap, a geezer, a guy, a bloke and a mensch." This charming blend of star power and genuine, down-to-earth humanity strikes a chord with fans and co-stars alike.
"And along with millions of others," Mirren admits in a heartfelt revelation, "I love him."