Harrison Ford remembers his Indiana Jones dad and "dear friend" Sir Sean Connery, who died on Saturday at the age of 90. The famed James Bond actor plays Dr. Henry Walton Jones Sr., an archaeologist and professor of medieval literature, who teams with his adventurer-archaeologist son (Ford) in 1989's Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. When Jones Sr. goes missing after he's hired by industrialist Walter Donovan (Julian Glover) to lead an expedition in search of the Holy Grail, the estranged Jones men must come together and find the prized artifact before it falls into the hands of the Nazis.
"He was my father…not in life…but in Indy 3," Ford said in a statement to Variety. "You don't know pleasure until someone pays you to take Sean Connery for a ride in the sidecar of a Russian motorcycle bouncing along a bumpy, twisty mountain trail and getting to watch him squirm. God, we had fun — if he's in heaven, I hope they have golf courses. Rest in peace, dear friend."
A retired Connery did not return alongside Ford in 2008's Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, which pays tribute to the character in a framed photograph in his son's home circa 1957.
Franchise creator George Lucas, also story writer and executive producer on The Last Crusade, similarly paid tribute to Connery in a statement:
"Sir Sean Connery, through his talent and drive, left an indelible mark in cinematic history. His audiences spanned generations, each with favorite roles he played. He will always hold a special place in my heart as Indy’s dad. With an air of intelligent authority and sly sense of comedic mischief, only someone like Sean Connery could render Indiana Jones immediately into boyish regret or relief through a stern fatherly chiding or rejoiceful hug. I'm thankful for having had the good fortune to have known and worked with him. My thoughts are with his family."
Last Crusade executive producer Frank Marshall and his wife, now Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy, said in a statement the two-time Academy Award winning actor "will be remembered for his talent, his charm, his wit and the many unforgettable roles he played, but he will always be Indy's dad to us. It was an honor to know and work with him and our hearts are with his family and loved ones."
Hollywood paid tribute to the actor over the weekend, including James Bond franchise producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli, as well as Connery's 007 successors Pierce Brosnan and Daniel Craig.