George Lucas, Steven Spielberg, and Harrison Ford Hid a Subtle ‘Star Wars’ Reference in ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark’

The Indiana Jones franchise is one that has been going strong since the early ’80s. Not only did the series reinforce Harrison Ford’s status as a Hollywood icon, but it reinvigorated the genre of the classic action-adventure. With Ford’s star power, the Indiana Jones series is one that appeals to fans of all ages. With the fifth film installment of the legendary franchise coming soon to theaters in 2022, even more viewers are discovering the joys of the franchise. And they’re learning about some behind-the-scenes secrets and in-jokes — including one involving Star Wars

George Lucas and Steven Spielberg collaborated on ‘Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark’

Harrison Ford (C), George Lucas (L) and Steven Spielberg at the photo call of 'Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull' during the 61st Cannes Film Festival.
Harrison Ford (C), George Lucas (L), and Steven Spielberg at the photocall of ‘Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull’ during the 61st Cannes Film Festival. | Stephane Cardinale/Corbis via Getty Images

George Lucas and Steven Spielberg began their collaborative process in the ’70s. At the time, Spielberg was already one of Hollywood’s biggest talents. Their earliest, successful collaboration was on the 1977 film Star Wars, based on a story by Lucas. While Spielberg didn’t receive a credit in the blockbuster film, ScreenRant reports that Spielberg still had an active role in the filmmaking process. He advised Lucas on several key points, including the hiring of composer John Williams to score the film. 

By the time that Lucas conceived the story for the film that would ultimately become Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark, Spielberg and Lucas were looking for ways to work together in a more official capacity. And finally, the time was right. Directed by Spielberg, the movie became a smash hit, setting the stage for a series of successful movies to follow. 

What ‘Star Wars’ Easter egg is in ‘Indiana Jones’?

Lucas and Spielberg had a lot of fun making the first Indiana Jones film. They didn’t miss the opportunity to include several fun “Easter egg” references to Star Wars. The most notable, and the one that has been making the rounds on social media, is one that fans can spot about halfway through the film.

According to ScreenRant, during the moment when Indy and his friend Sallah are removing the Ark of the Covenant from an ancient chamber, some hieroglyphics on the adjacent column feature renderings of C-3PO and R2-D2, the fan-favorite robots from Star Wars

It’s a moment that is subtle and easy to miss. But for diehard fans of the galaxy far, far, away, it’s not just fun. Easter eggs tie together the universes created by Lucas in a touching, memorable way. Notably, other Indiana Jones films have featured additional Star Wars references,n proving that Lucas and Spielberg were having fun by featuring little nods to their other big project. 

Will there be other ‘Star Wars’ references in ‘Indiana Jones 5’?

For years, there have been rumblings of a fifth Indiana Jones film. After it was confirmed in 2016, it has still taken years to finally come to fruition. Casting changes and the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic delayed production multiple times. In late 2020, showrunners revealed that they were eyeing a release date for the fifth film in 2022. But there is still no word on a title for the movie or any other major details. Still, fans have been reassured that Ford is on board once more to play the intrepid archaeologist. 

While Lucas has not officially been attached to the production, and with Spielberg not directing, it doesn’t seem very likely that there will be any new Star Wars Easter eggs in the newest Indy flick. Still, there’s always a chance that showrunners could work in some hidden references, for old time’s sake.

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