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Indiana Jones 5 Will Feature Decades-Old Footage Of Harrison Ford We Never Got To See

The first trailer for "Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny" got many fans buzzing in anticipation of the film's summer release for many reasons, not the least of which because it's been 15 years since the release of the franchise's last entry, "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull." Another big attention grabber was a brief clip in the trailer of a de-aged Harrison Ford in the guise of Indy that wasn't culled from flashback footage from any of the previous films in the action-adventure franchise.

Ford was first introduced as Indy in the 1981 blockbuster "Raiders of the Lost Ark," which was directed by Steven Spielberg and written by Lawrence Kasdan and based on a story by Lucasfilm founder George Lucas. The success of the movie, of course, led to two more Indiana Jones adventures in the 1980s — "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom" in 1984 and "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade" in 1989 — and in 2008, Ford reprised the role for "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull."

And while "The Last Crusade" keyed in on the Holy Grail and eternal life via the Fountain of Youth, the barreling wave of time inevitably washed over Ford, who turned 80 years old in the summer of 2022. However, since the film — which Variety reported is set in 1969 but opens with a scene in 1944 — obviously requires a younger-looking Ford, director James Mangold and his band of creatives used the ever-developing de-aging process to create the actor's youthful appearance. The results left Ford flabbergasted.

Harrison Ford says an artificial intelligence program helped capture his face from old unused footage

In a recent appearance on "Late Night with Stephen Colbert," Harrison Ford revealed to the TV talker that he was not only stunned to see the outcome of the scenes where he was de-aged digitally but also by the manner in which the film's visual effects artists achieved it through the use of artificial intelligence.

Even more fascinating, Ford said, AI had access to footage he shot for previous films in the Lucasfilm archive that didn't make the final cut, which made the de-aging scenes all the more fresh and exciting. "They have this artificial intelligence program that can go through every foot of film that Lucasfilm owns," Ford told Colbert. "Because I did a bunch of movies for them, they have all this footage, including film that wasn't printed. So they can mine it from where the light is coming from, from the expression."

Ford didn't pretend to know how the visual effects artists rendered such a stunning representation of his younger self, but he told Colbert with certainty, "That's my actual face [that audiences will see in the footage]."

"I put little dots on my face and I say the words and they make [it]," Ford told the "Late Night" host. "It's fantastic." Asked by Colbert if the de-aged footage freaks him out while showing him a photo of the younger version of Indy from the "Dial of Destiny" trailer, Ford replied with a laugh, "It's what I see in the mirror now."

The de-aged Harrison Ford scenes will make fans feel like they are 'in an Indiana Jones movie,' Kathleen Kennedy says

Discussing the upcoming release with Empire, "Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny" producer Kathleen Kennedy said she's aware of what fans might think when they see the de-aged Harrison Ford. "My hope is that, although it will be talked about in terms of technology, you just watch it and go, 'Oh my God, they just found footage. This was a thing they shot 40 years ago,'" she said.

"We're dropping you into an adventure, something Indy is looking for, and instantly you have that feeling, 'I'm in an Indiana Jones movie,'" Kennedy, who is also the president of Lucasfilm, explained to Empire.

Breaking down the 1944 scene for Empire, James Mangold said he wants the audience to experience a "Raiders of the Lost Ark"-era Indiana Jones, which he deemed his "chance to dive into this kind of full-on George [Lucas]-and-Steven [Spielberg] old picture and give the audience an adrenaline blast."

The blast from the past, however, apparently left Ford a bit rattled. "It's a little spooky. I don't think I even want to know how it works, but it works," Ford told Empire. "[It] doesn't make me want to be young, though. I'm glad to have earned my age."

"Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny" opens in theaters on June 30.