In Doors history little mentioned or known is Harrison Ford’s connection to The Doors. Ford, born on July 13, 1942 in Chicago, Illinois, is best known for his roles as Han Solo and Indiana Jones.
Ford kicked around Hollywood for a long time before making it big as Solo in George Lucas’ “Star Wars.” Ford arrived in Hollywood in 1964 and was hired by Columbia Pictures and placed in their ‘New Talent’ program where he got a little work in uncredited parts or as an extra. With a wife and children to support he worked as a carpenter, relying on his talents as an actor to convince people he knew what he was doing as a carpenter when he didn’t have vast experience in that profession. In one anecdote he describes telling George Lucas that he knew how to build a roof when in fact he didn’t. When he was hired to build the roof he learned how to do so by taking a book on roof building to the job with him.
Other carpentry jobs led him into contact with The Doors’ world. He worked for Elektra Records founder Jac Holzman. In “Follow The Music,” Holzman tells a story of Ford building the in-house studio for him. This contact may have led him to work as a grip on The Doors “Feast of Friends,” or it is possible Ford met Paul Ferrara through film channels. Ferrara worked in the film industry for many years after UCLA film school. Dennis Jacob, Jim Morrison’s UCLA roommate, also had ties to Francis Ford Coppola (Ford appeared in a cameo in “Apocalypse Now”), Ford could have met with Ferrara through any or all of these contacts.
In the “Feast of Friends” footage, Ford is visible in a few scenes, most notably the Fred L Stagmeyer minister at large scene that was included in “The Soft Parade” DVD. Ford is briefly visible as Jim Morrison turns to talk with the traveling minister (this is a fairly hilarious scene and should be watched on its own).
In another sort of Doors connection, Ford had an unaccredited role in Michelangelo Antonioni’s film “Zabriskie Point” a movie The Doors were asked to write a song for. The result was “L’America”, but Antonioni rejected the song for the film.
Originally published July 13, 2012.