Steven Spielberg Left 'Indiana Jones 5' Because Of Script Disagreements

It's hard to imagine an Indiana Jones movie without Steven Spielberg at the helm, but that's what we're going to get with Indiana Jones 5, which will be directed and written by Logan's James Mangold. The film went through several drafts and screenwriters before initial screenwriter David Koepp finally exited the project alongside Spielberg. And the delays on the film can be attributed to the disagreements Spielberg, Ford, and Disney had over that constantly-changing script.

In an interview with Den of Geek, screenwriter David Koepp, who left Indiana Jones 5 around the same time as Spielberg, explained why their version of the film fell apart.

"I tried a couple different versions with Steven and they all had some good stuff about them and they all had some stuff that didn't work, which happens. But it was just very hard to have everybody come together and have all the elements — Steven, Harrison (Ford), the script and Disney — come together at once. And it didn't."

Koepp wouldn't go into details about what those script disagreements were, but it seems like none of the parties involved could agree on the direction to take the movie. It's a problem that has been plaguing Indiana Jones 5 since it was announced all the way back in 2016. When the project was first announced by Lucasfilm, Koepp was on board to handle the script. Then, word surfaced that Jonathan Kasdan (Solo: A Star Wars Story) and Dan Fogelman (This Is UsTangled) would both be working on the script. Then, Koepp took over again, with the writer stating in September of last year, "I'm working on it again. We're still trying. And I think we've got a good idea this time. We'll see."

But script problems kept cropping up, with Ford even commenting on the script issues in February of this year. Finally, Spielberg and Koepp parted ways with the project, handing the movie over to Ford v Ferrari director James Mangold. But the exit seemed to be mutual for all parties involved, as Koepp only wishes the best for Mangold.

"When James Mangold came in and Steven stepped out, that was a pretty logical breaking point," Koepp told Den of Geek. "It's a gracious time to step out the door because I think the last thing a new director wants is the old director's writer. I mean, that's a drag. The last thing you need is some guy sitting around with his arms folded saying, 'Well, the way Steven would have done it is...' I had one nice friendly conversation with him and then I'm sure he wanted to be able to move on anyway. Everybody was pretty polite, I thought."

For now, Indiana Jones 5 is set to open July 29, 2022.