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Harrison Ford: King of Summer

The actor’s summer movies have made billions at the box office. We count down his biggest hits

En español  |  For Hollywood studios, summer movie season is huge — 40 percent of the year’s box office receipts come in during the warm months. And no one in film history has deliverd the summer movie goods better than Harrison Ford. All told, the actor's summer movies (for the purposes of this list, films released between May and August) have reeled in more than $3 billion at the U.S. box office.

See also: Take our Harrison Ford movie quotes quiz.

Harrison Ford riding an elephant in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom

Indiana Jones is just one of Harrison Ford's roster of iconic movie characters. — Paramount/Everett Collection

From the late 1970s to the late 1990s, in fact, a Harrison Ford summer hit was as predictable as fireworks on the Fourth of July. Though the dawn of the new millennium brought a temporary drop in his summertime star power, lately he's come roaring back — 2008's Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull ranks as his highest-grossing movie ever, bringing in $317 million at the U.S. box office. And this July, he returns to his favorite season with a featured role in Jon Favreau's Cowboys & Aliens. Had another actor agreed to take part in the sci-fi/western mashup, the idea might sound positively wacky. With Ford, it sounds more like a sure thing (actually, it still sounds wacky — but cool wacky).

Unlike some summer hits — brainless confections that disappear from the memory as soon as the credits roll — Ford's films more often than not match their box office receipts with quality. Five of the movies on this list garnered Oscar nominations for Best Picture, and when the American Film Institute ranked the top 50 movie heroes of all time in 2003, two of Ford's characters were near the top of the list: Han Solo at No. 14, and Indiana Jones at No. 2.

Next: A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away ... >>

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100 Must-See Movies for Grownups

100 Must-See Movies for Grownups

By Bill Newcott
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January 2015


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