Everyone’s favorite swashbuckling archaeologist is headed back to the big screen in the upcoming fifth installment of the Indiana Jones franchise, but fans will have to wait a little longer for his next adventure after the release date for the film was pushed back a year by Disney and Lucasfilm.
The sequel currently known as Indiana Jones 5 will bring back Harrison Ford as Dr. Henry “Indiana” Jones, and be directed once again by Steven Spielberg, with franchise creator George Lucas on board as executive producer.
With the film currently scheduled to hit theaters July 9, 2021, here’s everything we know about Indiana Jones 5 so far.
- Title: Indiana Jones 5 (not official)
- Release date: July 9, 2021
- Cast: Harrison Ford
- Director: Steven Spielberg
Spielberg revealed that filming will officially begin on the fifth Indiana Jones movie in April 2019 in the U.K.
“It’s always worth the trip when I get to work with this deep bench of talent coming out of the U.K.,” he said. “The actor, and the crew, the chippies, the sparks, the drivers — everybody who has helped me make my movies here, and will continue helping me make my movies here, when I come back in April 2019 to make the fifth Indiana Jones movie right here.”
It’s uncertain whether the studio’s announcement in July 2018 that the film’s release date will move from July 10, 2020, to July 9, 2021, will affect the production schedule for the film.
Details are scarce regarding the plot of Indiana Jones 5, but in late June 2018, veteran screenwriter David Koepp (Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, Jurassic Park) was reportedly replaced on the film by another frequent Spielberg (and Disney) collaborator, Jonathan Kasdan.
The extent of Kasdan’s role on the project is unknown, and he might be simply providing a polish of the existing script, or rewriting it entirely. Kasdan’s father, Lawrence Kasdan, penned the screenplay for the first film in the franchise, Raiders of the Lost Ark. The younger Kasdan most recently provided the script for Disney and Lucasfilm’s spinoff film Solo: A Star Wars Story.
As for the content of the story, franchise producer Frank Marshall has indicated that the fifth movie will be a continuation of the events following Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, rather than any sort of reboot or prequel. One thing that’s also been confirmed is that we won’t see Ford’s iconic character killed off.
“The one thing I will tell you is I’m not killing off Harrison [Ford] at the end of it,” said Spielberg of his plans for the film in a June 2016 interview.
The only confirmed cast member so far is Ford, but Indiana Jones’ next adventure will likely be his last performance as the character.
“This will be Harrison Ford’s last Indiana Jones movie, I am pretty sure, but it will certainly continue after that,” Spielberg told The Sun.
As for who will pick up the fedora after Ford, Spielberg said it’s time the character took “a different form,” and expressed a willingness to cast a female lead in the title role. “We’d have to change the name from ‘Jones’ to ‘Joan,'” he joked. “And there would be nothing wrong with that.”
Various cast members from the four previous films have expressed an interest in returning for the fifth installment of the franchise, but official confirmations have been hard to come by so far.
One thing is certain, though: Crystal Skull actor Shia LaBeouf will not reprise his role for the new film. LaBeouf played Mutt Williams, Indiana’s son with Marion Ravenwood (Karen Allen), in 2008’s Crystal Skull.
“Harrison plays Indiana Jones, that I can certainly say,” said Koepp in September 2017. “And the Shia LaBeouf character is not in the film.”
Franchise actor John Rhys-Davies told Digital Spy in February 2016 that he’d be up for reprising his role as Sallah in the next film if the character had a “meaningful” role to play in the film. He previously declined a role in Crystal Skull due to the nature of the character’s proposed part in that film.
Karen Allen also indicated she hopes to have a role in the new film for her franchise character, Marion, who appeared in both Raiders of the Lost Ark and The Crystal Skull.
Five-time Academy Award winner John Williams composed the score for all four films in the series up to this point and will reprise that role for the fifth installment of the franchise. Spielberg confirmed Williams’ involvement in June 2016 at an event held by the American Film Institute honoring Williams.
— Scott Mantz (@MovieMantz) June 10, 2016
Williams will look to replicate the success he had with the first three Indiana Jones movies, which each earned Academy Award nominations for their score. That run ended with the much-maligned fourth film, which did not receive a nomination.
Updated July 11 with the new 2021 release date for the movie.
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