Indy Will Continue Fighting Nazis And Fascism In Indiana Jones 5

Iconic fedora? Check. Dusty old jacket? Check. Trusty whip? Of course. The upcoming "Indiana Jones" movie even has a dangerous new locale for our beloved hero to traverse (New York City), so all that's missing is a formidable opponent with a meltable face. It's a good thing that director James Mangold ("Ford v Ferrari," "Logan") called up Mads Mikkelsen, because nobody wears villainy quite as well as him.

In 2023, Harrison Ford will star as the titular archaeologist for the fifth time, bringing us through the end of his heroic journey after 42 years. Hopefully Indy gets a smoother final chapter than the last character James Mangold helmed a sunset arc for: "Logan," while an incredible movie, was a pretty rough time for the titular character, so maybe this could be Indy's chance to meddle with mythical artifacts in peace.

Just kidding! Of course, this will be no simpler than any of his past adventures. Empire has revealed that the fourth movie picks up in 1969, with Indiana Jones "living against the backdrop of the space race — but the American effort to beat the Russians to the moon brings with it some uncomfortable truths for Indy." For a man whose life revolves around uncovering the secrets of Earth, the age of astronauts and moon landings puts him out of his element (though Indy does have some experience with outer space matters). But while some things change, others stay disturbingly the same: while the world reaches for the stars, Indiana Jones will once again find himself facing down the familiar foes of Nazis and fascism.

A blast from the past

"Indiana Jones 5" co-writer Jez Butterworth told Empire:

"The simple fact is that the moon-landing program was run by a bunch of ex-Nazis. How 'ex' they are is the question. And it gets up Indy's nose..."

To pinpoint a time in history, it sounds like the film will grapple with Operation Paperclip; the once-secret United States Intelligence program that saw the American government recruiting Nazi scientists post-WWII. In exchange for their work, they were protected from charges of war crimes (including Wernher von Braun, the Nazi-party member who became a pioneer of America's space tech). This certainly isn't the first time that TV or film has tangled with this bit of American history, and given where his journey began, it makes sense that Indiana Jones is once again facing down these familiar foes in a new way.

Mikkelsen will star as Voller, a character partially inspired by von Braun, the real-life Nazi-turned-NASA-engineer. Further details are being kept under wraps but Mikkelsen did offer Empire a rough outline of the movie to come, saying this of Voller's ambitions:

"He's a man who would like to correct some of the mistakes of the past. There is something that could make the world a much better place to live in. He would love to get his hands on it. Indiana Jones wants to get his hands on it as well. And so, we have a story."

We'll likely learn more about the upcoming film new week, when Empire's full issue hits news stands on Thursday, November 24. But the most important date to keep in mind is still a long way off: "Indiana Jones 5" is scheduled to swing into theaters next summer, on June 30, 2023.