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Indiana Jones 5 Will De-Age Harrison Ford for Its Opening Sequence

Indiana Jones 5 director James Mangold has revealed that VFX technology was used to de-age Harrison Ford for the opening sequence of the upcoming movie.

Mangold told Empire magazine that Ford was digitally de-aged for the movie’s opening minutes because they wanted to give the audience an “adrenaline” rush at seeing a young Indiana Jones swing back into action. The scene will drop Indy into 1944 where he’ll have to navigate a castle swarming with Nazis before transitioning into the main adventure.

“I wanted the chance to dive into this kind of full-on George-and-Steven old picture and give the audience an adrenaline blast,” Mangold explained. “Then we fall out, and you find yourself in 1969… The audience doesn’t experience the change between the ’40s and ’60s as an intellectual conceit, but literally experiences the buccaneering spirit of those early days… and then the beginning of now.”

“My hope is that, although it will be talked about in terms of technology, you just watch it and go, ‘Oh my God, they just found footage. This was a thing they shot 40 years ago,'” producer Kathleen Kennedy added. “We’re dropping you into an adventure, something Indy is looking for, and instantly you have that feeling, ‘I’m in an Indiana Jones movie.'”

The VFX team reportedly used several different techniques to pull the scene together, including the use of a new ILM software that scanned through archived footage of Ford in his earlier years before matching it to the footage shot for Indiana Jones 5. In the scene, he’ll be wearing a replica Raiders jacket that is a “thread-for-thread” dupe of the original.

“This is the first time I’ve seen it where I believe it,” Ford admitted, praising the de-ageing technology for successfully bringing a younger version of Indy back to the screen. “It’s a little spooky. I don’t think I even want to know how it works, but it works. Doesn’t make me want to be young, though. I’m glad to have earned my age.”

Indiana Jones 5 may be the last time we see Ford don the iconic hat and whip. However, Steven Spielberg has confirmed that the franchise will “certainly continue after that.” According to reports, Disney and Lucasfilm are “actively” looking to develop a Disney+ series with the legendary archaeologist, but it’s unclear who will star in the lead role.


Adele Ankers-Range is a freelance entertainment writer for IGN. Follow her on Twitter.

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