A new Indiana Jones 5 set image has surfaced, and it confirms what we suspected: we’re getting a digitally de-aged Harrison Ford at some point in the movie. This will immediately make some apprehensive, while also making others wonder: just how much digital de-aging is going on in the movie? And why? Ford is older now, of course, but he looks great for his age, and he already looked like an older Indy in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. So what gives?
Biodigital Jones, Man
The new set image can be found here (we’re not embedding it because we don’t like getting sued), and it confirms something we reported on earlier this week. Last weekend, filming on Indiana Jones 5 commenced on North Yorkshire Moors, and set pics showed a stuntman riding a motorcycle – and wearing a Harrison Ford mask. And not a Harrison Ford mask reflecting Ford as he looks now, but a younger version of Ford. There were also extras dressed as Nazis, and a “Nazi carrier engine and vintage cars” spotted.
This immediately made people (including us) speculate that Indiana Jones 5 would have some sort of flashback to World War II, and that it would very likely have a digitally de-aged Harrison Ford. While we still don’t have all the details, and it’s too soon to make snap judgements, the newest pic definitely confirms that there’s going to be a digitally de-aged Indy somewhere in the film. Ford can be seen in-character, sporting motion capture markers on his clothes and face. These are what digital effects artists use to track something on film and are a key part of the de-aging process.
So What Does This Mean?
The thing that’s throwing me off here is the amount of motion capture work going on. Again: these images are completely out of context, and it’s way too early to assume we know what’s up with Indiana Jones 5. But the scene with the younger Indy on a motorcycle was being shot at night, while this latest pic shows a scene being shot during the day. That strongly implies we’re getting multiple scenes with de-aged Indy. Which means we’re getting multiple flashbacks. So what could be going on here?
Is director James Mangold making a kind of Godfather Part II film that jumps back and forth between past and present throughout the entire story? Or is this just all part of one very lengthy flashback scene? I don’t know, folks. I just don’t know. But I’m getting a little nervous. I’m not against digital de-aging, and I think it worked pretty damn well in Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman, something that’s highlighted in this video:
But the digital de-aging in The Irishman made sense since it was a story spanning several decades. Without knowing what Indiana Jones 5 is about yet, I can only wonder what’s going on. Anyway, in addition to the motion capture reveal, that new set image also reveals that delightful character actor Toby Jones is in the film, something we hadn’t heard before. Good for you, Toby Jones!
In addition to Harrison Ford (and Toby Jones), Indiana Jones 5 also stars Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Mads Mikkelsen, Thomas Kretschmann, Boyd Holbrook, and Shaunette Renée Wilson. James Mangold directs, making this the first Indiana Jones 5 movie to not be helmed by Steven Spielberg. But Spielberg is still involved with the production, serving as a hands-on producer along with Kathleen Kennedy, Frank Marshall, and Simon Emanuel. Jez and John-Henry Butterworth wrote the script.
Indiana Jones and the Dangers of Digital De-Aging AKA Indiana Jones 5 hits theaters on July 29, 2022.
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