When Disney purchased Lucasfilm for $4 billion, most assumed that the studio would be focusing on the Star Wars franchise. But along with acquiring the rights to Star Wars, they also got the rights to the Indiana Jones films. Recent news has focused mostly on the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, other sequels, and their spinoffs. So it looked like Disney was putting Indiana Jones on the backburner. Rumors that Chris Pratt would play as Dr. Jones started to circulate earlier this year, but the actor said it probably wouldn’t happen because his action-film plate is pretty full. Even Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy admitted that they weren’t ready to release an Indiana Jones 5 because they didn’t have the right story yet.
However, during the Bridge of Spies press tour, director Steven Spielberg would probably do an Indiana Jones 5 with Harrison Ford, indicating that the role would probably not be recasted. Now, producer Frank Marshall is sharing that sentiment as he confirms that a recasting won’t happen. More on the story below.
In an interview with Total Film, Marshall said this about the future of who would play Dr. Jones:
There are a lot of rumors. We haven’t even sat down to talk about Indy yet… at some point we’ll sit down. But there’s a bunch of people who could probably take the baton. [But we are] not doing the Bond thing where we’re going to call somebody else Indiana Jones… we have to figure this out.
While this just delays the inevitable sequel even further, it does show us they are putting some considerable effort into bringing us a quality film that new and old Indiana Jones fans will enjoy. The last Indy film came out in 2008, and introduced his son Mutt (Shia LeBeouf) to the franchise. Considering LeBeouf’s career choices and tendency to appear in police mugshots, I’m not sure if Disney wants to extend an offer to the actor to reprise the role.
So what’s the next option? Well, if they aren’t going to do the whole Bond thing, they might introduce “another son” or a protege/student taking up the fedora and bullwhip. Or even just recast Mutt, I’m sure fans wouldn’t even mind if Disney entertained this idea.
Whatever Disney decides to do, fans of the iconic film character can rest easy knowing that Dr. Jones cannot be so easily replaced by pulling the “Bond card” as an excuse to recast.