'Star Wars,' Harrison Ford bring the force to Comic-Con

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"Star Wars" returned to Comic-Con with a rousing Hall H panel that proved the iconic franchise was still a Force to be reckoned with, nearly 30 years after the first movie's release.

Fans who camped outside the San Diego Convention Center were treated to a behind the scenes making of "The Force Awakens," which opens this Christmas, as well as a surprise concert after the Hall H panel for attendees. But it was Star Wars' rich cinematic legacy that stole the show on Friday night. Well, that and Han Solo.

In a rare emotional moment, Harrison Ford, after receiving a standing ovation, fought back tears as he expressed his gratitude for the series.

"The original Star Wars was the beginning of my working life," he said, visibly moved. "I was very happy to be apart of the story and the cast again."

It was Ford's first public appearance since crashing his plane in March, which left him hospitalized with serious injuries.

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'Star Wars,' Harrison Ford bring the force to Comic-Con
From Princess Leia's bikini to Queen Amidala's wedding dress, the creators of a new traveling Star Wars exhibit are hoping to gather geeks, fashionistas and movie fans together to see the costumes that helped bring iconic characters to life. (Feb. 2)
SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 30: Costume designer Aggie Rodgers and Laela French of Lucasfilm pose at 'Star Wars' and the Power of Costume opening exhibit at EMP Museum at Seattle Center on January 30, 2015 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Suzi Pratt/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 30: Actor Anthony Daniels interacts with fans at 'Star Wars' and the Power of Costume opening exhibit at EMP Museum at Seattle Center on January 30, 2015 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Suzi Pratt/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 30: Fans get their tickets and enter the building at the opening night of 'Star Wars' and the Power of Costume exhibit at the EMP Museum at Seattle Center on January 30, 2015 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Suzi Pratt/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 30: A fan poses for a photo at the opening night of 'Star Wars' and the Power of Costume exhibit at the EMP Museum at Seattle Center on January 30, 2015 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Suzi Pratt/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 30: Fans pose for photos at 'Star Wars' and the Power of Costume opening exhibit at EMP Museum at Seattle Center on January 30, 2015 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Suzi Pratt/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 30: Fans pose for photos at 'Star Wars' and the Power of Costume opening exhibit at EMP Museum at Seattle Center on January 30, 2015 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Suzi Pratt/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 30: Lightsaber duels commence at 'Star Wars' and the Power of Costume opening exhibit at EMP Museum at Seattle Center on January 30, 2015 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Suzi Pratt/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 30: Fans gaze in awe at 'Star Wars' and the Power of Costume opening exhibit at EMP Museum at Seattle Center on January 30, 2015 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Suzi Pratt/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 30: The original costume of Chewbacca on display at the opening night of 'Star Wars' and the Power of Costume exhibit at the EMP Museum at Seattle Center on January 30, 2015 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Suzi Pratt/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 30: Fans marvel at costumes at the opening night of 'Star Wars' and the Power of Costume exhibit at the EMP Museum at Seattle Center on January 30, 2015 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Suzi Pratt/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 30: Fans pose for a photo at the opening night of 'Star Wars' and the Power of Costume exhibit at the EMP Museum at Seattle Center on January 30, 2015 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Suzi Pratt/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 30: Fans pose for a photo at the opening night of 'Star Wars' and the Power of Costume exhibit at the EMP Museum at Seattle Center on January 30, 2015 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Suzi Pratt/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 30: Fans show off their costumes at 'Star Wars' and the Power of Costume opening exhibit at EMP Museum at Seattle Center on January 30, 2015 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Suzi Pratt/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 30: Original costumes from the movies of 'Star Wars' on display at the opening night of 'Star Wars' and the Power of Costume exhibit at the EMP Museum at Seattle Center on January 30, 2015 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Suzi Pratt/Getty Images)
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But the 70 year-old actor assured moderator Chris Hardwicke and the audience that he felt "just fine." He had also broke his leg in an unrelated, on-set accident that delayed production on "The Force Awakens."

Joining Ford onstage were director J.J. Abrams, producer Kathleen Kennedy, writer Lawrence Kasdan and several Star Wars newcomers and veterans, including original cast members Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher.

"It's such a personal story to everyone," Hamill said. "Suddenly you become a friend to everyone."

Fisher agreed and later joked that the original stars look a little "melted" in "The Force Awakens" but "in a good way."

Abrams, who promised a new "Star Wars" trailer this fall, said one of the most important tasks for him was to let fandom get in the way of making the Disney and Lucasfilm sequel.

"When you're directing a scene on the millennium falcon..it doesn't make the scene good," he said. "It's definitely bitchin', don't get me wrong, but what's the story?"

He also brought out a giant robotic creature from "The Force Awakens" to emphasis how important authenticity, not CGI, was to the film's shoot in London and Morocco.

"We have a cut of the movie," he later teased. "(But) we're still tweaking at this point to get the right story."

A few audience members caught the director off guard at one point when they asked why there weren't more Asian Americans in the "Star Wars" universe.

"I think you'll be happy to see there are asians in this film," he responded, thanking them for their "hugely important question."

He added: "We didn't write the character to be any color...we wanted the movie to look the way the world looks."

"Star Wars: The Force Awakens" hits theaters Dec. 18.

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