Harrison Ford is an Academy Award- and BAFTA-nominated, as well as Golden Globe-winning, American actor. During his Hollywood career of four decades, Ford has become best known for his performances in the Indiana Jones film series, the original Star Wars trilogy, and Blade Runner. In 1997, Ford was ranked # 1 in Empire's "The Top 100 Movie Stars of All Time" list.
Publicly political, Ford spoke out against the Iraq War in 2003 and has criticized Hollywood's production of violent films. As an environmental advocate, he shaved a portion of his chest hair to show the effects of deforestation in 2008. Ford sits on the board of directors of Conservation International. He was awarded the Jules Verne Spirit of Nature Award for his ongoing work in preservation of the planet. In 1993, the arachnologist Norman Platnick named a new species of spider Calponia harrisonfordi, and in 2002, the entomologist Edward O. Wilson named a new ant species Pheidole harrisonfordi (in recognition of Harrison's work as Vice Chairman of Conservation International).
Question: How has E.O. Wilson affected your thinking on conservation?
Harrison Ford: The work itself is, as Dr. Wilson has said, is an educational effort to cause people to understand and to protect these reservoirs of biodiversity. I have not so much changed my mind about how to accomplish these things; it's really the mission of Dr. Wilson's foundation to bring understanding to the broad population and young people who will be making important decisions in the future and to current leaders both in the business community and in government who can make policies which are more beneficial to the preservation of biodiversity. So I cannot say specifically that his way of approaching biodiversity has changed the way I think about it, except to say that Dr. Wilson has a great gift of language and he has made a very powerful argument in favor of living nature. And I find his argument, his persuasive powers, have led me to think about ways of presenting the problem to other people.
Recorded on: June 19, 2008