Harrison Ford says his marriage secret is ‘Don’t talk. Nod your head’


My favorite fusspot is making the rounds! Harrison Ford is out doing promo rounds for Call of the Wild and I couldn’t be happier because I love when Harrison does promo rounds. His latest is an interview in Parade Magazine, for which he got the cover. I can, I kid you not, remember the first time I read a Harrison Ford article in Parade Magazine (Parade and the comics were the only part of the paper I read until my teens). It was soon after Stars Wars exploded and it was where I learned that he had been a carpenter (they had a photo of him standing on a roof that I can still see in my mind’s eye) and that his sons were the same age as me, which is not helpful when one is crushing on an older man. Anyway, Harrison is back in the glossy pages of Parade and he’s just as surly as ever. He discusses being a carpenter (full-circle!), CotW’s environmental message and his secrets to a successful marriage (even if it is, regrettably, not to me).

He Came, He Saw(ed): In Hollywood, he became frustrated early on with bit parts, so he learned carpentry to supplement his income, remodeling houses and building cabinets and furniture. “Everything I built is still standing today,” he says proudly. As his hammer-and-nail business grew, so did his acting résumé—but he vowed to never take another acting job unless the next role was better than the one before. “The last time I packed up my tools to go do a movie, I had no idea I wouldn’t unpack them again,” he says. “And that was [Han Solo in] Star Wars.”

Going ‘Wild.’ In The Call of the Wild (in theaters now): the latest big-screen adaptation of the classic adventure novel by Jack London, he plays John Thornton, a prospector in the Klondike Gold Rush of the 1890s who befriends a formerly abused dog, Buck. Together in untamed Alaska, Jack and Buck find how much they both needed “to slough off [their] domestic experience and feel a part of nature,” says Ford, who adds that the movie’s bigger theme is that “nature doesn’t need people; people need nature.”

That secret to his 10-year-marriage to actress Calista Flockhart: “Don’t talk. Nod your head.”

The return of Indy: Ford won’t reveal any details of the 2021 movie with director Steven Spielberg, except to say he’s looking forward to his standard Indy tasks: running, jumping, falling and rolling around. “They’re hard,” he says of the Indiana Jones movies, “but they’re fun.”

[From Parade]

I saw someone on Twitter unhappy with Harrison’s marriage comments. As was probably abundantly clear, I am a Fusspot Ford apologist, so I tend not to get upset about his jokes. I will add the qualifier that I don’t care for the idea of the of the wife as the overbearing shrew who screeches her poor husband into silent submissiveness. That said, given what we know about Harrison, his joke doesn’t even play into that sentiment. If anything, he doesn’t listen to anyone because he’s too stoned to listen and he’s nodding to the voices in his own head. I don’t think he’s the best husband, but I don’t think he’s the worst either. And Calista is sharp, she knew the man she was marrying. At least he was mostly past his mid-life crisis when they got together. For the record, I love the two of them together. I’ve loved all his wives.

Back to his carpenter days, because a 30-year-old Harrison Ford working on my roof still fuels my fantasies. Forgive me if I am repeating myself, but did we all know he was Joan Didion’s carpenter? Griffin Dunne (actor and Joan’s nephew) interviewed him on camera for his Joan documentary The Center Will Not Hold. Joan and husband John Dunne would invite Harrison to stay for dinner after he’d finished working and Harrison said he felt dwarfed by the intellectual conversation they would have with their famous friends. Good lord, talk about fantasies! Whereas Joan might appreciate Harrison taking on Call of the Wild, I doubt she’ll buy advance tickets to the next Indy film, whenever that gets made. *Sigh* but I probably will.




Photo credit: Parade and WENN/Avalon Photos

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27 Responses to “Harrison Ford says his marriage secret is ‘Don’t talk. Nod your head’”

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  1. Scollins says:

    What an arsehole.

  2. McMom says:

    In certain situations, nodding and not talking is the perfect response. My husband has finally learned that when I am venting, he needs to not try to fix whatever is bothering me, but instead just listen with intent. Not talking, nodding, and making the appropriate noises to show that he’s paying attention are the best responses.

  3. Ariel says:

    I loved Han and Indy (pretending the 4th one didn’t happen).
    But does one take marriage advice from a man twice divorced?

  4. Mia4s says:

    I’ve seen a lot of people upset about the marriage comment…which is completely ridiculous. He has a very dry sense of humour and would rather chew on broken class than give a sincere answer. If he’d responded with “well communication and intimacy is key and…*talks for six paragraphs*” I’d have thought one of his grandchildren was being held hostage. That’s Ford for better or worse.

    Oh and this is marriage number three and he was a known cheater. Not someone to take marriage advice from! 😬

    • Erinn says:

      On top of that, I appreciated the part of the interview where he said he likes to take his plane out – but he makes sure he gets his chores done before doing so. More husbands should be reading that part. A HUGE chunk of wives would be a lot happier to see their husbands go out and have their fun if they’re holding up their end of the household chore bargain.

      I find him amusing.

    • lucy2 says:

      Yeah, I have to think anyone taking that comment seriously doesn’t know much about him. That’s such a HF answer, like you said, I’d be shocked if he said otherwise.

      I always forget he and Calista are married. One of my oldest friends was obsessed with him back in the day, so we watched every movie of his over and over. Not that I complained!

    • Mel M says:

      Exactly. My first thoughts when I saw that this was trending was that people who don’t know what a dry sense of humor he has are not going to get that this is a joke. That’s just him.

  5. Jillian says:

    I just finished The Princess Diarist, and Harrison comes off like such a d-bag. Carrie Fisher didn’t pull a lot of punches and I think she was pretty fair in her description: sexy and charismatic, but also a selfish asshole who isn’t very smart.

    • H says:

      I read the book when it came out. Carrie did not pull any punches. I’m going to miss her wit and charm. However, I don’t think their affair was some grand thing just two hot people trapped in London together who found each other attractive. Harrison was a cheater, but hopefully he’s not that way with his current wife.

      And the comments? That’s just Ford. He’s hates interviews and all the stuff promoting movies, always has.

  6. Casey says:

    on the one hand, clearly a joke, on the other the continual perpetuation of the concept that men are just tied to women that nag and scream and don’t care about how the man thinks and that a lack of communication is a healthy thing in a marriage, or even the only way a marriage can survive needs to die a death already

  7. BAddie says:

    I absolutely hate the narrative that the only way to have a relationship last with a woman is to act like you listen, have no opinion, and become a mindless yes man! I for sure don’t want that in my life, that would be the fastest route to marital problems. Do be an ass, respect and hear your partner out so that you can do the work and reap the benefits together. If the only way you can do that is by nodding and keeping your mouth closed then you are a real piece of work! Sorry, I’m in my Scorpio bag this morning!

    • ChillyWilly says:

      I’m tired of it too. Also tired of the “Happy wife, happy life” thing some men like to say. It’s so condescending.

  8. Spicecake38 says:

    There is a time to nod and there is a time to speak.I think he’s saying he’s learned when to do what.
    Thanks for the picture of Harrison Ford the carpenter,he looks really good there and still good now imo.I like him and Calista.

  9. Polyanna says:

    Calista had to have already known his nature when she married him. If she wanted a man who would stroke her hair and discuss her emotions at length, she wouldn’t have married Harrison haha.

  10. S says:

    It’s an old man joke about marriage, from an old man. If his wife wants to take him to task for it, fine. If she wants to laugh and think it’s funny, also fine. Really not something to get worked up about.

    • smcollins says:

      Absolute agree. He has a very dry wit that gets missed in print. He’s not perfect (no one is), but he’s still one of the good ones. Of course I’m biased because I’ve been crushing on him since I was a young girl obsessed with Star Wars and Indiana Jones, so there’s that. #forevercrush

  11. ME says:

    That sounds like some horrible advice (even if he’s joking). What if a woman said the same thing Ford just said? Yes just nod at whatever your husband says. Hell no. Sounds like a sh*tty marriage to me.

  12. Laura-j says:

    I read it as how to deal with interviews about his marriage… and / or a clear joke.

  13. MsIam says:

    Wow, I thought they had been married longer than 10 years. I remember the scandal about their relationship due to the age difference. Seems like that was forever ago. Or maybe they have been married for 10 years but together for much longer.

    • S says:

      Yes, they were together 8 or 9 years before they officially married. They started dating in early 2002, or at least that’s when media started reporting on them as a couple, according to my insider source 😆 (a.k.a. Google search).

  14. Veronica says:

    Eh, Ford has always had a pretty wry, sarcastic sense of humor, so I feel fairly safe assuming he’s joking and not being totally condescending. Flockheart wasn’t a pushover in interviews, so I’d think they have a pretty balanced marriage.

  15. AmyB says:

    Harrison Ford is my forever crush ever since Star Wars/Indiana Jones haha! And yes, he hates interviews and clearly has a very dry, sarcastic sense of humor, always has, if you have seen him in interviews – clearly making a bit of a joke here! Is he the warmest person? Doubt it! But I don’t care, not married to him and he is still my forever crush even in his 70s !!! Love him xo

  16. Valerie says:

    I forgot they were married! This is kind of dumb assed ‘advice.’ Even if he’s joking, it just reinforces some stupid and outdated ideas that some, unfortunately, people still believe. Relationships take work, yes, but this is just some ball and chain shit.