A fifth Indiana Jones movie was officially announced by Disney today, with Steven Spielberg returning to direct, and Harrison Ford once again playing the titular role. The franchise, part of Disney's acquisition of Lucasfilm, will return to theaters on July 19, 2019. Kathleen Kennedy, Lucasfilm's President, and Frank Marshall will produce.
“Indiana Jones is one of the greatest heroes in cinematic history, and we can’t wait to bring him back to the screen in 2019,” said Alan Horn, Chairman, The Walt Disney Studios in a press release. “It’s rare to have such a perfect combination of director, producers, actor and role, and we couldn’t be more excited to embark on this adventure with Harrison and Steven.”
The franchise's first four films have grossed nearly $2 billion globally (which, incidentally, Star Wars: The Force Awakens from Disney/Lucasfilm outdid on its own), and is considered a pioneer in modern action/adventure films. With Ford as Indiana Jones, an archaeologist and explorer, he paved the way for later heroes, like video game stars Nathan Drake and Lara Croft. While Disney's ownership of Lucasfilm is only a few years old, Indiana Jones rides and attractions have been at Disney Parks for years.
Disney's Bob Iger confirmed at the end of December 2015 that a new Indiana Jones was on the way, but this is the first official announcement including the returning star and director, and the announcement of the release date.