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James Mangold Teases a ‘Hero In Sunset’ For Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny

December 24, 2022 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny Harrison Ford Image Credit: Lucasfilm

James Mangold is behind the camera for Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny, and he recently teased what to expect from the film. Mangold spoke with EW about the upcoming film, which releases on June 30th, 2023. During the discussion he noted that while Shia LaBeouf’s Mutt will not be part of the film, we will “find out what happened” to him. You can check out some other highlights below:

On the titular Dial of Destiny: “I can’t [reveal what it is], because I don’t want to give the movie away. But is there a relic in this movie that possesses a kind of power, or may possess a kind of power? And is it based on history and scientific speculation? Yes.”

On the film’s 1969 timeframe: “I mean, 1969 is the beginning of now, really, in terms of technology and the space race. So, you have Cold Wars, nuclear power, intrigue, the lack of clear good guys and bad guys. In the same way, you have to be really considerate about how you try and transpose a fairly simplistic kind of black-hat, white-hat sensibility into a period that is more complicated. We try to exploit that by jumping forward into 1969 to a hero who is used to a black and white world, [but finds himself] in a world that has gone gray.”

On Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s Helena: “She’s a daughter of a friend of Indy’s, who we will also meet in the movie. Helena’s gotten herself in a bit of trouble, and brings [that] to Indy’s doorstep. She’s a character who’s a wonderful set of contradictions — charming and brilliant, but also a lot of trouble.”

On comparisons between this film and Logan: “I’m always interested in this idea of a hero at sunset. What does the hero do when the world no longer has a place for him? I find it really interesting to try to look at classical heroes through the prism of our jaundiced contemporary attitudes.”

On exploring those themes within the tone of the franchise: “I am under no illusions that my job making an Indiana Jones film was to suddenly beat the humor out of it and turn it into some kind of dirge,” he says. “I think that what we’re trying to do is balance both an accurate and realistic appraisal of where this character would be at this time in his life, and do that honestly, and at the same time, try and carry forward what the very title of our movie promises, which is a romp and a wonderful adventure with action and chivalry and escapes by the skin of your nose and ingenious solutions to diabolical problems. This is an Indiana Jones film.”