Indiana Jones trivia - 21 things you might not know
Compiled by Jack Foley
Raiders Of The Lost Ark
1) Tom Selleck was originally cast as Indiana Jones at the request of George Lucas, who initially objected to the casting of Harrison Ford because he did not want the actor to be constantly associated with his films. Selleck, however, was unable to take the role because he was committed to Magnum, P.I..
2) Another star had to withdraw due to TV commitments: in this case, Danny DeVito, who was to play the role of Sallah, but who was forced to drop out due to conflicts with Taxi
3) Raiders of the Lost Ark‘s opening scene in the lost South American temple is partly based on a classic Disney Ducks adventure helmed by the legendary artist Carl Barks, many of whose comic books have inspired George Lucas and Steven Spielberg.
4) Indy’s line to Marion when they are on the ship – “It’s not the years, honey, it’s the mileage” – was ad-libbed by Harrison Ford. It was later used by producer Frank Marshall to deflect criticisms surrounding the decision to revive the franchise at Ford’s pensionable age.
5) The infamous scene in which Indy shoots a marauding swordsman was not in the original script. Harrison Ford was supposed to use his whip to get the sword out of his attacker’s hands, but the food poisoning he and the rest of the crew were suffering from left him too sick to perform the stunt. He tried, but after numerous failed attempts, someone suggested: “Why doesn’t he just shoot him and get it done and over with?” Liking the idea, Spielberg immediately shot that instead.
Indiana Jones & The Temple of Doom
6) The film’s original title was Indiana Jones and the Temple of Death. But it was changed because it sounded too foreboding.
7) For the bug chamber sequence, Kate Capshaw was covered with over 2,000 bugs. Incredibly, the actress had to be taught how to scream – it would have taken us seconds!
8) Known for his dedication to make stunts look as real as possible, Harrison Ford actually herniated his back in the scene where he is attacked in his bedroom by a Thuggee assassin. As a result, production had to shut down for Ford to be flown to LA to have an operation.
9) In case you wanted to know the recipe for some of the Pankot Palace feast, the “chilled monkey-brains” were made from custard and raspberry sauce. Yummy!
10) Steven Spielberg has since admitted that he did not enjoy this film as much as the other two – but filming was a great experience because he met his future wife, Kate Capshaw.
Indiana Jones & The Last Crusade
11) According to Steven Spielberg the decision to have Sean Connery play Indiana Jones’ father was an inside joke to James Bond being the father of Indiana Jones. The director had always wanted to helm a Bond film but did Indiana Jones as a James Bond style character.
12) Probably not something you needed to know, but Sean Connery and Harrison Ford wore no trousers during the shooting of the Zeppelin sequence – because it was filmed in a very hot studio and Connery didn’t want to sweat too much. That’s father-son, erm, Bonding at its best!
13) The casting of the late River Phoenix as the young Indiana Jones (for the film’s opening sequence) was actually the idea of Harrison Ford.
14) A geographical fact for all you intrepid archaeologists out there: The temple that features at the end of the movie exists, but not in Alexandretta. It is in Petra, in Jordan. But there is no inside to it – the doorway that can be seen on screen is huge and eight or nine people can easily walk through it shoulder to shoulder.
15) The Bond in-jokes didn’t stop at Connery: In total, The Last Crusade also boasts a former 007 ally (John Rhys-Davies), a former Bond girl (Alison Doody), two former Bond commanding officers (Michael Byrne and Billy J Mitchell), a former Bond nightclub owner (Vernon Dobtcheff), and three former Bond villains (Julian Glover, Stefan Kalipha and ‘Pat Roach’).
16) Gregory Peck was considered for the role of Indy’s father.
Indiana Jones & The Kingdom of The Crystal Skull
17) M. Night Shyamalan and Tom Stoppard were each asked to pen a draft of the screenplay – but neither was used.
18) To reprise his role as Indiana Jones, Harrison Ford – now 64 – spent three hours a day at the gym, and placed himself on a high-protein diet of fish and vegetables, thus building his body into a condition where he could perform his own stunts. Spielberg has since said that he was so impressed with Ford’s physical condition that he could not tell the difference between the shoots for the third and fourth films.
19) Shia LaBeouf was so excited about doing an Indy film when he signed on for the film in April 2007 that he didn’t even read the script.
20) Legendary stunt co-ordinator Vic Armstrong, who worked on all three previous Indiana Jones films, could not work on the fourth as he was committed to The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor . He was replaced with Dan Bradley.
21) Indiana Jones & The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull is the biggest film shot in Hawaii since Waterworld. However, due to an approaching hurricane, Spielberg was unable to shoot a fight at a waterfall, so he sent the second unit to film shots of Brazil’s spectacular Iguazu Falls.
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