Forgotten 'Exorcist' Ripoff Starring Harrison Ford is Free to Watch Now

Forgotten 'Exorcist' Ripoff Starring Harrison Ford is Free to Watch Now
Image credit: Warner Bros., Legion-Media

Sometimes ridiculous, sometimes creepy — one of Harrison Ford's forgotten roles will appeal to all admirers of the legendary actor.


  • Before he became famous for Star Wars, Harrison Ford was involved in several television projects.
  • One of them was a TV film that tried to imitate The Exorcist.
  • Today you can watch the movie for free.

Harrison Ford has repeatedly stated that the role of Han Solo is his least favorite, and even when everyone was excited about the return of the hero in The Force Awakens, the actor was only happy that the character was ultimately killed off. But it's unlikely that even the Hollywood icon himself would deny that Star Wars was the defining moment of his entire acting career, which has spanned six decades. Before that, however, he had been appearing here and there in movies and television for a decade, often in uncredited or episodic roles (not counting the more substantial roles in American Graffiti and The Conversation). Thus, among the numerous projects he jumped into, there were enough seemingly passable ones that only hardcore fans remember today.

And that is a shame, because among them was a rather interesting TV movie in the horror genre (no, we are not talking about the atrocity that was the Star Wars Holiday Special!) Made in the midst of the massive success of William Friedkin's The Exorcist, it was more of a commercial venture that didn't impress audiences much at the time of its release. But in 2024, this Ford movie is considered a real hidden gem that will appeal to Ford fans and horror buffs alike. Why not check it out since it's free to watch?

What Is This Harrison Ford TV Movie?

The 1970s was defined by William Friedkin's terrifying masterpiece, and so many in the major film and television industries have maniacally tried to replicate its success by offering a slew of rip-offs centered around the themes of possession and exorcism. One of these is The Possessed, a made-for-TV movie starring Harrison Ford that aired on NBC on May 1, 1977 — yes, literally 24 days before the release of Star Wars, which launched Ford's career.

Forgotten 'Exorcist' Ripoff Starring Harrison Ford is Free to Watch Now - image 1

The movie was directed by Jerry Thorpe and written by John Sacret Young, best known as the co-creator of the ABC war drama China Beach. Harrison Ford's name wasn't the most recognizable at the time, but the movie starred some pretty heavy hitters like James Farentino, Oscar winner Joan Hackett, Ann Dusenberry and Eugene Roche. The plot revolved around a dead Catholic priest (Farentino) who was sent back from heaven to earth to practice exorcism. One day, fate brought him to an all-girls Catholic college in Salem, Oregon, where mysterious events began to occur: objects and clothing belonging to some of the students and teachers suddenly burst into flames.

But within the walls of the college, many 'sinful' acts were brewing: bullying of classmates, seduction of minors, and the general tense atmosphere created by the teachers. And as it turned out, a demon was born in these conditions, feeding on evil.

Harrison Ford played a teacher, Paul Winjam, who had a relationship with both the principal and one of the students, the principal's niece. It was a relatively small role, and Winjam became the demon's first victim, but the actor was perfectly suited to the role of a sleazy and even villainous character.

Where to Watch the Movie for Free?

First, you can sign up for a free 30-day trial of Amazon Prime Video. After that, of course, you'll need to subscribe to the service (the cost is $8.99 per month, or $14.99 per month with an Amazon Prime membership).

Second, the full HD remastered version of the 1977 movie is available on YouTube, so that's the best option.