When it comes to the Indiana Jones movies, few in the tomb raiding series are as divisive as the 2008 film, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Despite grossing over $790 million at the worldwide box-office, many fans of the franchise don’t look back on the 2000s movie fondly, primarily due to one thing – aliens.
Indiana Jones 4 saw Harrison Ford back as the titular treasure hunter, as he embarks on a new adventure with his old beau Marion (Karen Allen) and their son, Mutt Williams (Shia LaBeouf). Along the way, the fedora-wearing hero, finds skeletons belonging to “interdimensional beings” and must confront Soviet KGB Agent Irina Spalko (Cate Blanchett) in a bid to find the crystal skull of Akator.
Although we have seen arks melt Nazi faces off, black magic, and even the mythical holy grail throughout the adventure movies over the years, ‘crystallised bones’ from outer space may have been a step too far. In an interview on the Script Apart podcast, screenwriter David Koepp revealed that despite penning the script, he, like many fans, was sceptical of the alien angle in Indy’s 2008 outing.
In fact, Koepp tried to persuade director Steven Spielberg and co-creator George Lucas to reconsider the story, echoing long-time archaeology buffs’ concerns that extra-terrestrial beings just didn’t fit in the Indiana Jones franchise.
“When I came on, I tried to convince [Spielberg and Lucas] to change it — I had this other idea. They didn’t want to change it,” Koepp explained.
“I’m not saying mine would’ve been better,” he continued. “But I think that a lot of the pushback that movie got, in a larger sense aside from little things people might not have liked — that were too silly or whatever — the larger one was that [fans said], ‘We don’t feel like aliens should’ve been in an Indiana Jones movie.'”
While many aren’t fans of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, with the film only sporting a 53% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes, at eth end of the day, it was still a financial success – aliens or not.
We are curious to see what Indy will be up to next in his upcoming adventure, Indiana Jones 5, which is scheduled to hit theatres on June 30, 2023