Friday, January 4, 2008

Indy No. 4

The new Indiana Jones movie, which opens May 22, is getting a major plug in this month's Vanity Fair. I have to say that Harrison Ford and Shia LaBeouf look pretty good together on the cover. I loved all three previous movies, from 1981's Raiders of the Lost Ark onward, so I'm definitely looking forward to this.

The main article, by Jim Windolf, gives a brief summary of the careers of filmmakers Steven Spielberg and George Lucas, reviews the roots of the series, and offers a little bit about what fans can expect.

The fourth installment, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, takes place in 1957. Indy will be battling the Russians, including a very severe-looking Cate Blanchett, judging from her picture. There's also supposedly a science fiction element to the story, which I'm not crazy about. I like my archaeological adventures grounded in the real world.

Even more tantalizing is this paragraph about what Spielberg will be tackling after Indiana Jones:

"My glance strays to a side table, where headshots of actors under consideration for his likely next directing project, Chicago 7—about the conspiracy trial that grew out of protests at the 1968 Democratic convention—lie on the surface. Among them I spy Will Smith, Taye Diggs, Adam Arkin, and Kevin Spacey; Sacha Baron Cohen (as Abbie Hoffman) and Philip Seymour Hoffman (as William Kunstler) are also linked to the project, which has a screenplay by Aaron Sorkin. ... After Chicago 7, Spielberg will probably go on to direct Lincoln, with Liam Neeson in the title role."

Ok, I'm not a Sacha Baron Cohen fan. I think his routine is obnoxious and offensive. And I've written about my problems with Aaron Sorkin's play The Farnsworth Invention. But for me, the 1960s will always be the most fascinating decade, and I once met Chicago 7 defendant Tom Hayden, back when he was married to Jane Fonda. Plus, the rest of the cast sounds pretty intriguing. I'd love to know which role they have in mind for Kevin Spacey.

Vanity Fair also has several Web exclusives: interviews with Spielberg and Lucas, some speculation about whether there'll be a new Indy trilogy, with LaBeouf taking over the franchise for movies 5 and 6, and video footage of Annie Leibovitz' photo shoot from the set.

While there isn't too much to see yet on the official Indiana Jones Web site, you can watch a video with "wrap shots" from each of the movies. And it's pretty thrilling to hear the first strains of the rousing John Williams theme music.

I always plan to watch these big summer blockbusters in the theater and not wait for them to come out on DVD, but for some reason I never get around to it. I have to admit that watching Spider-Man 3 on the small screen definitely takes away most of the excitement. So this time, I plan to be at my local air-conditioned multiplex with a tub of popcorn.


Man of Plastic said...

I'm also a huge Indiana Jones fan and am looking forward to the new film, although with some trepidation.
But about the Chicago 7. In the mid-1980s, Jerry Rubin, hippie turned yuppie, and Abbie Hoffman, hippie forever, were doing a touring one-on-one debate. They came to my college and I had the good luck of meeting Abbie at a party thrown by the editor of our student newspaper. I say good luck because, hey, how many times in your life to do meet an icon. Beyond that he was a drunk still trying to pick up woman half his age (if that). It was at least somewhat funny.

Esther said...

Hey MofP, thanks for the comment!

Wow, we've both met members of the Chicago 7. What a coincidence! I was looking them up on wikipedia last night, and sadly, very few are still with us anymore. I'm really interested in that period, and I'm really curious to see what Spielberg does with the subject.