M. Night Shyamalan Reflects on Pitching His Sequel Idea to Steven Spielberg

Work has already begun on the next entry in the Indiana Jones franchise, but there’s a compelling what-if scenario regarding the last entry, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the CrystalSkull. That film ended up being rather lukewarmly received, which can’t help but make you think about what it could have been under M. Night Shyamalan, who at one point met with Steven Spielberg about the film and had a full pitch for the project. Shyamalan talked about the meeting and the process with Collider and revealed he still has the pitch he made in his green notebook.

“Oh, my God. I mean, it was fantastic. Obviously, Raiders of the Lost Ark is my favorite movie of all time, and so this was a dream, to be asked as a kid to go see a movie in a movie theater and then later to be asked by that person to write one of those in the future. I could faint at that moment. It was amazing. I do have my notebooks; I still have those with all my ideas for that movie. I did have a take. I talked to everybody involved and it was so nascent at that time, that movie. Everyone hadn’t gotten into a room yet. They were bouncing ideas off of me. So everyone had different ideas of what to do. When you say that, I have in my head, it’s a green notebook, and I had this idea. It was a darker idea,” Shyamalan said.

He had a pitch ready, complete with what the MacGuffin would be, and teased it was a little darker. “I did, I did, yeah. I had an idea. I hadn’t pitched it to them or anything like that, but I had an idea,” Shyamalan said.

Ultimately he didn’t end up working on the project, and Crystal Skull would go on to become the most divisive entry in the series. It was also supposed to set up a successor, but that didn’t pan out obviously. Harrison Ford will be reprising his role in 5, and while there have been some delays, Ford assured they are taking the time to get this one right.

“I don’t really want to give them what they want to see,” Ford explained. “I want to give them something they didn’t anticipate seeing. I think they’re used to a degree of disappointment when you revisit — I mean certainly the Marvel movies have made a spectacular example of success that worked the other way around. They killed it. Well, we’re not going to make another Indiana Jones unless we’re in a position to kill it. We want it to be the best. So we’ve got some scheduling issues, a few script things still to do, but we’re determined to get it right before we get it made.”

Indiana Jones 5 is expected to hit theaters on July 29th, 2022.

Would you have liked to see Shyamalan’s take on Indiana Jones? Let us know in the comments!

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