David Harbor takes inspiration from E.T. for his We Have a Ghost character

EXCLUSIVE: David Harbor breaks down how E.T. helped him develop his character and performance as Ernest Ghost on Netflix's We Have A Ghost.

David Harbor reveals that E.T. helped him create his own character, Ernest the Ghost, in We Have A Ghost. Harbor stars in the Netflix film as the titular ghost, a ghost that haunts the house a new family moves into. Instead of scaring them off, Ernest bonds with Kevin, the youngest of the two teenage sons. Kevin works to help Ernest uncover the truth about his past, while his family uses Ernest's viral video to gain the attention of the CIA.

In an exclusive interview with Screen Rant, Harbor explains the challenges of playing a non-speaking character on We Have A Ghost. He shares his inspiration for why he cares about E.T. bringing Ernest to life through his expressive performance. Harbor also offers new insights into how he made the character of Ernest, including how he doesn't fit in with the world around him.

David Harbour: I was scared because he doesn't have any lines, right? So it's like, "How are you going to reveal this guy?" But I thought a lot about that movie E.T., and how expressive that little alien was with just a little finger and a puppet. And there's something about the simplicity and the stillness of Ernest that I found really profound. And the fact that there is all this cacophony around him of this TikTok world and this family who's somewhat disjointed and disconnected. He's this old guy who's been forgotten, who lives in the walls, who has this deep secret. There was something about that really guided me about this other factor. He was alien to this world; he was uncomfortable with it. And there was something about that, that I really latched onto and that allowed me a real focus.

How David Harbour's Career Has Evolved From Stranger Things To We Have A Ghost

Harbor faced a unique challenge in that Ernest needed to bring both charm and pathos to a character who never said a word. Take inspiration from the performance of the puppets in E.T. It's an incredibly insightful decision, as viewers instantly connect with and care about this character. harbor performance Ernest uses his comic skills and ability to express emotion through only his body to make his characters sympathetic without saying a word.

Harbor was an actor for many years, but he rose to prominence after playing Jim Hopper in Stranger Things, which showcased his prowess in comedy, drama, action and horror. He recently joined the MCU as the Red Guardian in Black Widow and will reprise the role in the upcoming Thunderbolt movie. Harbor also played Santa in the critically acclaimed Christmas action film A Night of Violence.

"Stranger Things" allowed Harbor to showcase his impressive range of actors, as well as his ability to lead large-scale dramas. His career has continued to evolve, with each role displaying a different skill set through comedy, action and drama. We Have A Ghost showcases a new look for Harbor, who delivers an impressive performance that touches hearts without the need for dialogue. His ability to find a connection to his characters, whether it's a dumb ghost, an ass-kicking Santa, or a burnt-out super soldier, brings heart and authenticity to him every performance of his.

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