The American Black Film Festival honored Billy Dee Williams with the Hollywood Legacy Award back in February of this year. The iconic Star Wars actor has finally released Harrison Ford's touching video message from the show on social media today, giving fans a special treat. Fans were ecstatic to learn that Williams had officially joined the cast of the upcoming Star Wars 9 and now we're all sitting around waiting to see some first footage of the man back as the iconic Lando Calrissian.
Harrison Ford spends nearly a minute congratulating Billy Dee Williams and talking about how much fun that they had working together on The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. Spliced into the tribute are pictures of the two actors together, on screen and off, goofing around along with red carpet images. Ford ends his tribute video by wishing that they hung out more, which hopefully has happened since the taping of the video. It's a cool video for Star Wars fans to see, especially since Ford tends to be a bit of a hermit sometimes when it comes to anything having to do with the franchise.
Obviously, Billy Dee Williams is probably best-known for his work in the Star Wars universe, but the actor had a great career before and after fighting alongside Han Solo. Over the years, Williams has starred in Brian's Song, Lady Sings the Blues, Mahogany, Nighthawks, and Tim Burton's Batman, where he played the underused Harvey Dent. Many fans were hoping that we were going to get the chance to see Williams as Two-Face, but that never came to be.
Billy Dee Williams is 81-years old and started his acting career at the age of 8 on Broadway in The Firebrand of Florence. He later returned to Broadway as an adult in the early 1960s for The Cool World and A Taste of Honey. By the time that The Empire Strikes Back was released in 1980, Williams had been acting for 35 years, which explains the props that Harrison Ford was giving him for being a consummate professional with a ton of ideas to expand the Lando Calrissian character. Williams may be best-known for playing Lando, but the man has done a lot of things over the years.
If all of that acting wasn't enough, Billy Dee Williams also made a jazz record in 1961 of standards and it was a commercial success. It isn't clear why he didn't pursue his music career further, but 1961 was a busy year for Williams. Luckily, we'll all get to see him back on the big screen as Lando Calrissian when Star Wars 9 hits theaters next year. It's been a long time, and fans are excited to see him back and hopefully on the Millennium Falcon. You can watch Harrison Ford's tribute below, thanks to Billy Dee Williams' Twitter account.