The truth of the matter is that Harrison Ford is 79 years old. He’ll be 80 by the time Indiana Jones 5 opens in theaters next summer. He can’t keep doing this forever. It seems all but certain that this will be his final appearance as Indiana Jones. But it seems all but certain the franchise will continue without him, either with a new actor replacing Ford as Indy or perhaps with a new character inheriting the franchise in some way.

According to The Daily Mail, the plan may actually be for the latter, with their anonymous sources claiming that Ford’s new Indiana Jones co-star, Phoebe Waller-Bridge, will take over the series after this film as a “female version of the fictional professor of archaeology in the adventure movie franchise.”

Insiders claim Kathleen Kennedy, the Hollywood producer behind the franchise, is keen to make ‘big, bold’ changes – with few bigger than switching the lead character to a woman.

None of the people mention in the Mail’s report, from Kennedy to Waller-Bridge, or their spokesmen would comment on the rumors. And they also note that “others in the industry cast doubt on the suggestion.” So this could be the first and last time you hear about this potential succession plan for Indiana Jones. (They also claim she plays “ an assistant to Indiana Jones” in Indy 5.)

Don’t forget, after all, that the previous Indiana Jones movie, 2008’s Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, introduced its own heir apparent to the franchise. Shia LaBeouf played a young adventurer named Mutt Williams who recruits Indiana Jones to help him find his kidnapped mother, Marion Ravenwood. It later turns out that Mutt is Indy’s son, and the finale of the film teased him inheriting his father’s fedora. Now here’s Indiana Jones 5 and not only is it not called Mutt Williams and the Doohickey From Beyond the Whatever, but LaBeouf isn’t even in the movie at all. So it’s more than reasonable to be skeptical about this rumor that Waller-Bridge is next in line to crack Indy’s whip.

We’ll find out what happens when Indiana Jones 5 opens in theaters on July 29, 2022. At present, the film’s official title has not been revealed.

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