James Mangold may helm Indiana Jones 5 as Steven Spielberg bows out

Last Updated on August 2, 2021

Steven Spielberg, Indiana Jones, James Mangold

As the developmental process for INDIANA JONES 5 continues to feel as if it's been dodging snakes and boulders for far too long, it's been announced that Steven Spielberg will no long direct the long-awaited sequel, starring Harrison Ford as the legendary adventurer. This will be the first time in 39 years that Spielberg will not act as the director of an Indy installment, and word is that LOGAN and FORD V FERRARI helmer James Mangold is in talks to crack the whip as the project's new director.

To help ease your pain, I'm happy to report that Spielberg will remain aboard the project as a hands-on producer. According to a source close to the project, the decision to leave was entirely Spielberg's call, as a way of relinquishing the reigns to a new visionary that will in all hope bring a new energy to the beloved franchise.

Recently while doing press for his latest feature, THE CALL OF THE WILD, Ford told CBS Sunday Morning that he was “going to start doingIndiana Jonesin about two months.” Shortly thereafter, Ford sat down for a fireside chat with HeyUGuys, and admitted that Indy 5 is still contending with “scheduling issues and a few script things” and that “we’re determined to get it right before we get it made.”

A fifth installment of the Indiana Jones franchise feels as if it's been imprisoned inside a rotting sarcophagus for eons, despite Hollywood trying their damnedest to crack the code since the release of INDIANA JONES AND THE KINGDOM OF THE CRYSTAL SKULL. In fact, it was only a year ago when SOLO: A STAR WARS STORY writer Jonathan Kasdan was assigned the project. For a time, Kasdan had fans believing that all was under control, and that a 2020 debut for the long-gestating Harrison Ford-led adventure was sure to happen. However, Kasdan's valiant efforts were dashed when his take on the tomb-raiding, whip-wielding explorer were denied by the studio. This was a nasty snakebite to the project for sure, a matter that was made even worse when Spielberg had moved on to helm his musical passion project WEST SIDE STORY. Thankfully, it sounds as if the script is steadily coming along, what with production expected to begin sooner rather than later … maybe.

For the moment, the next installment of the Indiana Jones film series is expected to venture into theaters on July 9, 2021. However, with a new director coming on board, I wouldn't be surprised if the film gets pushed again. I say this because whomever steps up to the plate will need time to assess the situation, and see exactly what they're dealing with, after so much shuffle and fuss.

However this shakes out, whomever comes aboard as the film's director is going to have their work cut out for them. Personally, I'm disappointed to hear that Spielberg is bowing out, though I do feel as if Mangold is a solid replacement, should he officially land the gig. His LOGAN ranks as my personal favorite among all the X-Men-related films to date, and I've heard nothing but glowing remarks about his latest effort, FORD V FERRARI.

How do you feel about Spielberg exiting his role as the director of INDIANA JONES 5? Do you think Mangold will make for a worthy replacement? Let us know your thoughts and feelings in the comments section down below.

Source: Variety

About the Author

Born and raised in New York, then immigrated to Canada, Steve Seigh has been a JoBlo.com editor, columnist, and critic since 2012. He started with Ink & Pixel, a column celebrating the magic and evolution of animation, before launching the companion YouTube series Animation Movies Revisited. He's also the host of the Talking Comics Podcast, a personality-driven audio show focusing on comic books, film, music, and more. You'll rarely catch him without headphones on his head and pancakes on his breath.