As Indiana Jones 5 counts down the days before its theatrical release, rumors are floating around that this is Harrison Ford’s last outing as the titular character. While nothing has been officially confirmed, the 80-year-old actor’s age has ramped up the conversation about his franchise departure.
It’s difficult to imagine the Indiana Jones franchise without Ford’s rogueish charm and action skills. But once upon a time, the actor was going to be passed on for the role he is most known for (apart from playing Han Solo in Star Wars) because Steven Spielberg and George Lucas wanted to create a new star.
Harrison Ford Wasn’t The First Pick For The Role Of Indiana Jones
Today, the Indiana Jones franchise (which has grossed $1.9 billion till now) is synonymous with Harrison Ford. It’s impossible to think of an Indy film without the actor. But if things had gone a little differently, he wouldn’t have been cast at all. When Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) was getting developed by Steven Spielberg and George Lucas, the latter reportedly didn’t want to work with Ford again after collaborating on Star Wars.
It was because he didn’t want them to develop a Martin Scorsese and Robert De Niro sort of working relationship with him. In a report by Empire, George Lucas said:
“I was wary of Harrison and I becoming like Scorsese and De Niro. I thought, ‘Let’s create a new icon.’ We found Tom Selleck, but as soon as the network heard, his option on Magnum P. I. got picked up.”
Tom Selleck is best known for Magnum, P. I as well as Blue Bloods and FRIENDS. On the latter, he played Richard Burke, Courtney Cox’s Monica’s much older boyfriend in season 2. He was originally supposed to star in only 3 episodes but ultimately ended up appearing in 9.
Since Selleck couldn’t be Indiana Jones, Lucas and Spielberg circled back to Ford. But the Star Wars creator wasn’t convinced that the actor would go for a three-picture contract. After all, he wasn’t too enthusiastic about that on Star Wars.
But Spielberg pushed Lucas, and so they narrated Ford the script. The rest is history because the actor said, “Yeah, I’ll do a three-picture deal. I’d love to.” What a rollercoaster ride it has been since then as the Blade Runner star is now presenting the fifth film in the franchise.
Harrison Ford Wanted Indiana Jones 5 To Be Madly Ambitious
Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny could very well be the end of an era that began with 1981’s Indiana Jones and the Raiders Of The Lost Ark. As such, Harrison Ford wanted the film to go big. In an interview with Esquire, he said:
“I wanted an ambitious movie to be the last one… and I don’t mean that we didn’t make ambitious movies before. They were ambitious in many different ways. But not necessarily as ambitious with the character as I wanted the last one to be.”
Ford has worked on the franchise for over four decades, and so he was also determined to show his age on-screen too. It now remains to be seen how audiences respond to the actor’s possible last adventure as Indy.
Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny will be released on 30 June 2023.