The guys over at Cin City 2000 recently made a case for who could play the next Indiana Jones. They argued that since Indy’s genesis is very much derived from the James Bond lore, why not just get someone to portray Indiana Jones for the next batch of movies. They argued that Indiana Jones “stands for every globetrotting adventurer.” Though I may not agree entirely with the idea of picking a new Dr. Jones, it’s still something to consider.
The future of Indiana Jones adventures is unknown. Many have speculated (and George Lucas has said aloud) that we may see some adventures with Mutt (portrayed in The Kingdom of the Crystall Skull by Shia LeBeouf) after this film. CC2K makes a case for “Firefly”‘s Nathan Fillion as being a worthy replacement for the franchise, but it makes you wonder: Who else could wear that fedora?
First, let’s define exactly what it is that makes Harrison Ford a great Indiana Jones.
1. He’s a man’s man
4. Intense five o’clock shadow?
5. He’s Harrison F*cking Ford!
So, who possesses all those qualities (1-4):
Clive Owen was one of the people considered for James Bond when Pierce Brosnan stepped down, along with the likes of Jude Law and a few others. He’s an Oscar-nominated actor who has some action chops (Shoot ‘Em Up was a riot) to boot. He’s got the charm and all, but is he too British? I can’t seem to recall what his American accent sounds like.
Hey, if Harrison Ford can play Indiana Jones and Han Solo, why can’t McGregor play Indy and Obi-Wan Kenobi? This Scottish actor has appeared in several action flicks. But is he a man’s man? He might be too much of a touchy, feely Indy who spends too much time getting freaked out by baby’s crawling on his ceiling. Plus, The Island left a bad feeling in my mouth as to his action movie credibility.
He almost got Han Solo over Ford! So let’s play a game of “What if” and picture Nick Nolte as Indiana Jones. Do you see him? With his crazy I-just-got-arrested hairdo. Squinty eyes. Grizzled voice. Like he’s always three seconds away from breaking your neck. Imagine Nolte in Temple of Doom — not only would he be more than happy to pull someone’s heart out of their chest, but he’d probably take a bite or three.
Maybe my personal favorite choice, Hugh Jackman has been groomed for a role like this for some time. He got fan boys attention by playing the uber-manly Wolverine, and I think I just saw him wearing a hat not too unlike a fedora in the trailer for Baz Luhrmann’s Australia. He’s got the charm, the no-bullsh*t attitude, but can he be fun? My main beef with Jackman is that he takes things too seriously.
I remember reading something back in Entertainment Weekly right after Men in Black came out, comparing Smith to Harrison Ford. Both actor’s have a wide appeal, and Smith already played a white man (kinda, he replaced Robert Conrad as James West in Wild Wild West). He’s got a lot of action/adventure on his resume. He made us all laugh in “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.” Smith has the type of appeal that reaches beyond race.
I gotta give CC2K credit for this one. Fillion is a damn good pick. They made a good point when they say “Indiana Jones and Mal Reynolds (from “Firefly”) are both adventurous bumblers.” That’s some of the joy of watching those old Indiana Jones movies, to see the way Indy will improvise. Fillion has what it takes to be a leading man in Hollywood, and I’m surprised he really hasn’t made that leap yet. Maybe it’s about time he took over a giant franchise and became the world’s favorite archeologist.
Talking point: Who do you think would make a worthy Indiana Jones replacement?