Star Wars (original trilogy)
Released: Episode IV: A New Hope (1977); Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back (1980); Episode VI: Return of the Jedi (1983)
U.S. box office gross (cumulative): $1.05 billion
Ford’s casting as cocky Millennium Falcon pilot Han Solo in the most successful movie franchise of all time is the stuff of Hollywood legend. By the mid-1970s, he had all but given up on an acting career and was relying on his carpentry skills to make a living in Los Angeles. One of his jobs was to build a portico at Francis Ford Coppola’s office, where George Lucas was holding auditions for Star Wars. Lucas and Coppola asked Ford to stand in and read lines with the actors trying out for various roles— and the director soon realized that his perfect Han Solo was the guy with the hammer.