Is Steven Spielberg on some kind of back-to-basics nostalgia roll? Just in time for the release of his future-retro romp through the pop culture dystopia of Ready Player One, the legendary director has revealed a start date for development on the fifth installment in the Indiana Jones film franchise.
Speaking at an awards ceremony in Great Britain to accept Empire magazine’s "Legend of Our Lifetime" award, Spielberg told the audience he plans to be in the U.K. next spring to begin filming the yet-to-be-titled Indiana Jones 5.
Via Empire, which is also featuring Indy on the cover of its current “Spielberg Takeover” issue, the director said work on the fifth movie — the first since 2008’s Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull — will begin in April of 2019.
“It’s always worth the trip when I get to work with this deep bench of talent coming out of the U.K.,” Spielberg said in his acceptance speech. “The actors, and the crew, the chippies, the sparks, the drivers — everybody who has helped me make my movies here, and will continue helping me make my movies here when I come back in April 2019 to make the fifth Indiana Jones movie right here.”
So far, what we know about the next Indy installment can be summarized pretty quickly. The studio is eyeing a summer 2020 release target, Shia LaBeouf’s polarizing Mutt Williams character is a no-go, and, for the first time ever, George Lucas apparently hasn’t had much creative input this time out. Oh, and Harrison Ford, now a young 75 years old, is set to return.
It’s less clear whether Chris Pratt, long rumored to be a Spielberg favorite for some kind of role in the new movie, will join the cast. But we do know one constant will remain: Screenwriter David Koepp already has assured fans that the plot for Indiana Jones 5 will involve… wait for it… a dangerous hunt for a precious ancient relic.
With Indy 5 looking like one of Spielberg’s next two priority projects (he’s also begun development on a remake of West Side Story), it’s all but inevitable that the progress reports on the new film will soon be coming faster than you can crack a whip. In the meantime, get your Spielberg fix by checking out Ready Player One, which lands in theaters on March 29.