Thirteen years ago, Dr. Henry “Indiana” Jones survived a nuclear blast, psychic communists, CGI monkeys, ancient aliens and middling reviews in Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Now, the beloved Harrison Ford-starring franchise is dusting off the old fedora to commence work on a new film in the long-running franchise next week.
Forty years since his first adventure, Indy’s latest is already shaping up to be a drastically different affair than his last. Here’s everything we know so far about the yet-untitled fifth outing with the world’s most violent elderly college professor.
When will Indiana Jones 5 be released?
The film is set for release on July 28, 2022, barring any delays.
Who is returning for the movie?
Ford is the only recurring cast member confirmed to return, though John Rhys-Davies, who declined a cameo in Crystal Skull, told Digital Spy he would love to reprise his role as longtime Indy ally Sallah. Casting reports have not included Karen Allen, whose Marion Ravenwood tied the knot with Indy at the end of Crystal Skull long after debuting in Raiders of the Lost Ark. Nor have they mentioned Jim Broadbent, who took on the role of Indy’s dean at Marshall College in the last film.
One thing is almost for certain: The film will not see the return of Shia LaBeouf’s Mutt Williams. The son of Indy and Marion, Mutt was positioned as the heir apparent to Jones. Fans tore the leather-jacketed greaser stereotype to shreds before the torch could be passed. Now, with abuse allegations hanging over the LaBeouf's head, it appears Mutt’s only legacy will be the time he swung like Tarzan alongside a bouffant-sporting monkey.
Who is joining the cast?
Casting announcements have come regularly during the pre-production process. Character details are nonexistent, but Ford will be joined by Fleabag darling Phoebe Waller-Bridge, who can now boast appearing alongside Indiana Jones and Han Solo. Mads Mikkelsen is likely to be on villain duty, given his tendency to be Mads Mikkelsen.
Who is behind the camera this time?
For the first time in the series, Steven Spielberg is stepping away from directing duties. James Mangold — who previously helmed Logan, Walk the Line, Ford V. Ferrari and 3:10 to Yuma — will direct. Spielberg will remain hands-on as producer alongside longtime collaborator Frank Marshall.
John Williams, meanwhile, is on board to rework on the score you already have in your head.
What will Indiana Jones be about?
Following the Communist-punching, ‘50s-set Cold War antics of Crystal Skull, Indy 5 will jump forward into the ‘60s, with Mangold indicating it could take place at least partially in NY.
The nuts and bolts of the story are open to speculation, but rumors have frequently mentioned it has to do with the Space Race and will see Indy return to the time-honored (and now more relevant than ever) pastime of punching Nazis.
Recent pre-production photos from Bamburgh Castle in the UK have fans at Den of Geek speculating that at least part of the film could be resurrecting a discarded opening sequence from Last Crusade in which the famed archaeologist squares off with a Scottish ghost. Given Jones’ tendency to globe-trot, though, it’s anyone’s guess what he’ll be up to in that castle.
Is this Ford’s last turn as Indy?
“It’s not the years, honey, It’s the mileage,” Indy famously told Marion in Raiders of the Lost Ark. That was 40 years ago. The famously cantankerous Ford will be a few weeks shy of 80 once Indy 5 debuts, and given the time between films, it’s probably unrealistic to think that Ford is willing to get dragged behind a truck again.
While recasting is often met with derision, it’s pretty unlikely that Disney is going to let this franchise sit in a giant warehouse gathering dust next to the Ark of the Covenant. In all likelihood, the series will have to follow the lead of Last Crusade and Young Indiana Jones chronicles and allow Ford to narrate a prequel adventure. Or Ford could assume the Sean Connery role, provided they find a more worthy successor to Indy's whip.
See where Indy's adventures rank among the 101 greatest action films of all time
And read what Time Out's critic had to say about Kingdom of the Crystal Skull