Will Shia LaBeouf Be in ‘Indiana Jones 5’?

Indiana Jones 5 is finally in production, and fans are thrilled to see Harrison Ford get back in his iconic role. In the last film, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, Shia LaBeouf played a major role in the franchise’s story. He portrayed Mutt Williams, Jones’ long lost son. But because the actor has been so critical of the movie and its director Steven Spielberg, fans are wondering LaBeouf will be the next installment of Indiana Jones

Karen Allen, Harrison Ford and Shia LaBeouf
Karen Allen, Harrison Ford, and Shia LaBeouf | Johnny Nunez/WireImage

The importance of Mutt Williams in the ‘Indiana Jones’ saga

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull was premiered in 2008, nearly 20 years after The Temple of Doom was released. Labeouf brought new blood to the franchise as Marion (Karen Allen) and Jone’s illegitimate child, Henry “Mutt” Williams. Marion never told Jones or Mutt who they were to each other, and it isn’t until the end of the movie that they reconcile the fact that they’re father and son. 

The film ended with the family altogether at Marion and Jones’ wedding. And the final scene left the story wide open for a future Jones and son team-up. 

Shia LaBeouf slammed the movie two years later

Shia LaBeouf began criticizing the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull in 2010 when he told the Los Angeles Times that he wasn’t proud of his performance in the film. He also partly blamed director Steven Spielberg and the writers for botching the movie. 

Shia LaBeouf
Shia LaBeouf | Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images

“I feel like I dropped the ball on the legacy that people loved and cherished,” LaBeouf told the outlet. “You get to monkey-swinging and things like that and you can blame it on the writer and you can blame it on Steven, but the actor’s job is to make it come alive and make it work, and I couldn’t do it. So that’s my fault. Simple.”

Los Angeles Times

And then he did it again 

In 2012, when talking to The Hollywood Reporter, LaBeouf said that he “deeply” regretted his comments about Kingdom of the Crystal Skull because they “ruptured” his relationship with Spielberg. “He told me there’s a time to be a human being and have an opinion, and there’s a time to sell cars,” LaBeouf said at the time. “It brought me freedom, but it also killed my spirits because this was a dude I looked up to like a sensei.”  

A few years later, in 2016, Labeouf told Variety that working with Spielberg wasn’t what he thought it would be. “You get there, and you realize you’re not meeting the Spielberg you dream of,” he said. “You’re meeting a different Spielberg, who is in a different stage in his career. He’s less a director than he is a f*cking company.”

Steven Spielberg and George Lucas aren’t asking Shia LaBeouf to return for ‘Indiana Jones 5’

George Lucas and Steven Spielberg
George Lucas and Steven Spielberg | Tony Barson/WireImage

Neither George Lucas or Steven Spielberg — who are working together on the upcoming film — have responded to Shia LaBeouf’s criticisms, but it doesn’t look like they’re inviting him back into the fold. When talking to Entertainment Weekly, Indiana Jones 5 screenwriter David Koepp confirmed Shia won’t be playing Mutt Williams anytime soon. “Harrison plays Indiana Jones, that I can certainly say,” said Koepp. “And the Shia LaBeouf character is not in the film.”

It’s safe to say Shia LaBeouf isn’t going to be part of the next Indiana Jones movie. It will be interesting to see how writers address his character’s absence, or if they mention him at all.