When a man battles Darth Vader, Nazis and other evildoers for work, what does he do for fun? Harrison Ford finds his answer in a pilot's license and the freedom to take to the skies.

But with adventure comes risk, just as Han Solo, Indiana Jones and other daring movie characters Ford brought to life realized. On Thursday, one of Hollywood's pre-eminent stars added a plane crash to an aviation record that includes both mishaps and service to others.

Ford, 72, was flying a World War II-era plane when it lost engine power shortly after taking off from Santa Monica Municipal Airport near Los Angeles. He crash-landed about 2:20 p.m. on a fairway at the nearby Penmar golf course. No one on the ground was hurt.

Ford's son Ben tweeted Thursday evening from the hospital: "Dad is ok. Battered, but ok! He is every bit the man you would think he is. He is an incredibly strong man." Ford, who plays the swashbuckling Solo in his fourth "Star Wars" movie, set for release in December, has been publicly effusive about his love of flying.

After arriving in his own plane at a 2001 fundraising gala for Seattle's Museum of Flight, Ford said he was glad to help "engage kids in the romance and the mystery and the adventure of flying. … I know what it means."

He got his pilot's license in the 1990s and has made headlines, though he had never been significantly injured. In 2001, he rescued a missing Boy Scout with his helicopter. Nearly a year before, he rescued an ailing mountain climber in Wyoming. He has also volunteered his services during forest-fire season, when helicopters are busy battling blazes.

Associated Press

Prince brings Hit and Run Tour to U.S.

Since when does Prince let his drummer's hometown come before his own? The Funk Assassin of Chanhassen has announced that his Hit and Run Tour — which popped up all over Europe last summer — will now be rolling across the United States. For the first date next weekend, he and his band 3rdEyeGirl will run to Louisville, Ky., home of drummer Hannah Welton. There's no word on where they'll go next, nor even confirmation where they'll play in Louisville. Details of the Hit and Run shows are under wraps. During the European run, Prince would wait and announce the location of the gigs via Twitter and Facebook. That seems fine, except for one little problem: He has since taken down his Twitter and Facebook accounts and apparently sworn off social media. So maybe fans can expect the news via carrier pigeons (or doves?).

CHRIS RIEMENSCHNEIDER