Harrison Ford, who just turned 80 years old this year, is always keeping himself busy. After stepping right back into one of his most iconic characters over the course of 20 months in the middle of the pandemic, he wrapped on "Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny" only to go straight into filming on Apple TV+'s limited comedy series "Shrinking." Finally, starring opposite Helen Mirin, Ford went to the cold Montana mountains to play the patriarch of the Dutton family in the "Yellowstone" spin-off "1923."
There are actors a fraction of Ford's age that wouldn't be able to keep up and could easily find themselves exhausted by all this movement and pressures to live up to past expectations. Despite his grumpy exterior and persona, Ford enjoys keeping himself occupied. "I don't want to reinvent myself," Ford told the New York Times. "I just want to work."
Now that the actor has reached his 80s, many would assume Ford is breezing through and relying on his old tricks — but on the contrary, his latest streak of jumping from project to project is new for him, and he is still finding himself trying new things, especially as he treads new water on television.
On 1923, Ford Plays To His Age
"I've been working pretty much back-to-back, which is not what I normally do," Ford admitted. The prestige television Western franchise, "Yellowstone," is a prequel to the original show. It focuses on a different generation of the Dutton family during the prohibition era and the early stages of the Great Depression in Montana.
Taylor Sheridan, creator of "1923," brought Ford to his ranch outside Fort Worth and from there, the two started figuring out and developing the character of Jacob Dutton. "I'm 80, and I'm playing 77," Ford said with his classic dry wit. "It's a bit of a stretch." Despite the fact that this is first huge major television role, Ford found himself invested in Dutton, the character in the show is very much playing to his age — a man who is in the pursuit of protecting his family and clan near the end stages of his life.
Exploring Smaller, Intimate Roles On TV
"The character is not the usual character for me," Ford said. He also felt similarly towards his other new venture into television, "Shrinking," which was developed by Jason Segal, Bill Lawrence and Brett Goldstein of "Ted Lasso" fame for Apple TV+.
In "Shrinking," Ford plays a therapist suffering from grief named Dr. Phil Rhodes, who starts abandoning all of his professional ethics by telling his clients his honest and unfiltered opinions. His client, Jimmy (Jason Segal), who is also dealing with grief, tries to apply Dr. Rhodes' new philosophy to his life and antics ensue. Like "Ted Lasso," it's full of heart, but also plays up the sardonic qualities that are natural to Ford as an actor. "I've never been to a psychiatrist in my life," Ford quipped to the NYT.
Yes, Ford has reached 80, but he's also finding himself in an unique in-between space in Hollywood in which he still has enough star power to do big, blockbuster spectacles like "Indiana Jones," but with the disappearance of small dramas in Hollywood, has found television as a space to do smaller, more character-based work.
It isn't the years: it's the mileage.
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The post Harrison Ford Is Pushing His Boundaries With 1923 And Shrinking appeared first on /Film.