Photo: Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull / Paramount Pictures

What The Cast Of 'Indiana Jones' Thinks Of The Classic Adventure Series

When Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark burst onto the screen in 1981, it became a near-instant classic - and is now regarded as one of the top adventure movies of all time. Its titular hero excited audiences around the world with his adventurous spirit, rugged charm, and moral resolve.

Throughout the Indiana Jones series, Jones teams up with colorful characters, travels to exotic locales, and defeats villains ranging from the Third Reich to a black magic cult. The franchise has spawned TV shows, novels, comic books, and video games, and has left a lasting impression on all action-adventure heroes to follow. 

Indiana Jones has also strongly impacted the cast that brought it to life. Here is what the actors think of the classic adventure series today.

Photo: Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull / Paramount Pictures

  • Harrison Ford Says Nobody Else Should Play Indiana Jones After Him
    Photo: Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom / Paramount Pictures

    When asked about the possibility of Chris Pratt becoming the next Indiana Jones, Harrison Ford said, "Nobody is gonna be Indiana Jones. Don’t you get it? I’m Indiana Jones." He added, "When I’m gone, he’s gone. It’s easy."

    Ford summed up his thoughts on the topic with, "This is a hell of a way to tell Chris Pine this. I’m sorry, man." Chris Pine is, of course, another actor entirely, and the mix-up between "Pine" and "Pratt" was likely a mistake. Regardless, Ford has made his point clear: If anybody wants to play Indiana Jones, they'll have to pry the role from his weathered, archeologist fingers.

  • Karen Allen Didn't Want To Be Stuck Playing Marian Ravenwood For Years And Multiple Sequels 
    Photo: Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark / Paramount Pictures

    The character of Marion Ravenwood is introduced in Raiders as a fiery rabble-rouser with the guts to join any fight, the savvy to run a con, and the nerve to challenge Indiana Jones himself. Karen Allen loved playing Marion, and fans loved her performance, but after the film's success, the actress struggled to distance herself from the role.

    "I spent a good number of years running from that film, in a sense," Allen said in an interview. "[W]hen you do something successfully, there’s an awful lot of people who just want you to do it again and again and again. But that wasn’t very interesting to me."

    Allen was more interested in theater and her development as an artist. "I spent a few years trying to shake Marion off of me," she said. "I played that role, and now I’d like to play something completely different."

  • John Rhys-Davies Thought His Appearance In 'Indiana Jones And The Last Crusade' Completely Changed His Character 
    Photo: Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark / Paramount Pictures

    In an interview with The A.V. Club, John Rhys-Davies discussed the love he has for Sallah, and how he viewed his character in Raiders of the Lost Ark:

    I didn’t want to make him just a comic figure or some sort of caricature, so I tried to develop him as an intelligent man who was an opportunist yet was also tremendously loyal... a survivor like Indy, but someone who, above all, puts a value on loyalty and friendship.

    However, Rhys-Davies believes that Sallah, and the way he fit into the story, changed in the series' third film. The character became "more comic relief," he said, "because the focus of the film is now on father and son engaging in the ultimate quest, for the Holy Grail. And you accept that, because that’s part of your job."

  • Sean Connery Wanted To Return For The Fourth Film, But The Role Was Too Small To Leave Retirement 
    Photo: Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade / Paramount Pictures

    Sean Connery retired from showbiz in 2003 after a negative experience with his last project, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. Spielberg allegedly reached out to Connery about a potential role in 2008's Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, but Connery was unimpressed with the offer. As he explained:

    It was not that generous a part, worth getting back into the harness and go for. And they had taken the story in a different line anyway, so the father of Indy was kind of really not that important. I had suggested they [end] him in the movie, it would have taken care of it better.

  • Kate Blanchett Always Wanted To Be Indiana Jones 
    Photo: Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull / Paramount Pictures

    As Russian agent Irina Spalko, actress Cate Blanchett played Indy's newest nemesis in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull - but she once had her heart set on a very different role in the franchise. "Everyone at my primary school wanted to kiss Harrison Ford," she told Parade in 2008, "but I actually wanted to be Harrison Ford. I wanted to be Indiana Jones!" 

    Blanchett had nothing but praise for Indy's original outing. "[I]t was utterly electric, utterly transporting. The Raiders theme still gives me goosebumps," she said.

  • Shia LaBeouf Hated Working With Stephen Spielberg
    Photo: Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull / Paramount Pictures

    Shia LaBeouf seems to owe much of his early career to Steven Spielberg, who produced the Transformers movies, Eagle Eye, and Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. However, the actor had some negative things to say about the director.

    "You get there, and you realize you’re not meeting the Spielberg you dream of," LeBeouf said in September 2016. "You’re meeting a different Spielberg, who is in a different stage in his career. He’s less a director than he is a f*cking company." LaBeouf doubled down on the vitriol by saying he didn't like any film he'd made with Spielberg, with the exception of Transformers. 

    A month later, the actor backpedaled on his comments. "I probably coulda gone lighter on Spielberg. That was probably something I should’ve backed off of, but my feelings are real," he said. "Dude gave me a lot of opportunities, though. And that’s on me."