What The Cast Of Raiders Of The Lost Ark Looks Like Today

Over 35 years after its debut, Raiders of the Lost Ark remains one of the most exciting, popular, and influential action films ever made. Even people who haven't seen Raiders are probably familiar with the rolling boulder that caps off the film's first big set piece, the film's face-melting finale, and its swaggering hero, Indiana Jones.

But while some movies are timeless, most actors aren't. Aside from the obvious (hello, Mr. Ford), many of the actors who appeared in Raiders of the Lost Ark are still toiling away in relative obscurity—if they're still in show business at all. Some movies are bigger than their stars, and with most of Raiders' cast members pushing 70 (if they're not there already), it's the perfect time to see what happened to those familiar faces and discover where they are now.

Harrison Ford - Indiana Jones

Harrison Ford was a big star before he donned Indy's signature fedora—after all, he was one of the leads in a little film called Star Wars—but Raiders of the Lost Ark catapulted him into the Hollywood elite. As the lead in films like Blade Runner, Witness (which nabbed Ford his first and only Academy Award nomination), Air Force One, and three more Indiana Jones flicks, Ford isn't just an international superstar—he is officially the highest-grossing actor in box office history.

And yet, despite all that success, Ford never quite escaped Indy's shadow—and it's not clear that he wants to. In 2008, Ford picked up Indy's whip for Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, reprising the role after a 19-year-absence and kicking off a decade-long nostalgia tour that saw him reprise some of his most iconic roles, including Han Solo (2015's Star Wars: The Force Awakens) and Rick Deckard (2017's Blade Runner 2049). The next Indiana Jones film is scheduled for July 19, 2019, with Ford set to star once again.

That's not all, either: in 2008, Ford joined the Archaeological Institute of America as a Grand Trustee, where he advocated for real archeologists and spread the word about real-life artifact theft. After all, Ford says, "Knowledge is power, and understanding the past can only help us in dealing with the present and the future."

Karen Allen - Marion Ravenwood

Karen Allen may be best known as Marion Ravenwood, Indiana Jones' feisty love interest in Raiders of the Lost Ark (and bride, in 2008's sequel, Indiana Jones and Kingdom of the Crystal Skull), but she's also an accomplished comedic actress who had roles in National Lampoon's Animal House, Scrooged, and The Sandlot.

In the '90s, she started scaling back her film and television work in order to concentrate on her family. According to Allen, show business can be hard on children, and Allen decided to raise her son Nicholas in the Massachusetts countryside, "even though it meant putting my career as an actor on the back burner." Still, that doesn't mean Allen hasn't been busy. In 1995, she converted a barn into a yoga studio and started teaching classes. More recently, she put her Fashion Institute of Technology training to work and founded Karen Allen Fiber Arts, a clothing company that sells clothes based on her own designs, as well as pieces created by other local artists.

Paul Freeman - Rene Belloq

René Belloq, Indiana Jones' rakish rival in Raiders of the Lost Ark, isn't a Nazi, but that didn't stop Paul Freeman from getting typecast as one just the same. Back in 2003, Freeman said, "I became known for playing Nazis which is not actually what Belloq was, and for many years afterwards I had a sort of steady career playing Nazis, which eventually became very boring." After a year in which Freeman played a concentration camp commander in two separate films, he decided to get out of the Nazi business, although he still plays the occasional villain, including Ivan Ooze in 1995's Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie.

He's still working, too. In 2015, Freeman appeared on Starz' historical fantasy Da Vinci's Demons—a part he got by filling an old chapel with candles, putting on a CD of Gregorian chants, and auditioning via video while wearing his wife's hoodie as a cloak—and he had a supporting part in the 2016 dance drama High Strung. While Raiders of the Lost Ark didn't launch Freeman's film career like he'd hoped it would, when it comes to his filmography, he says he has no regrets. "I would've liked to have played the fox in Pinocchio," Freeman quips, "but that's about it."

John Rhys-Davies - Sallah

While Raiders fans will think of John Rhys-Davies as Indiana Jones' ally, Sallah, the Welsh actor is probably best known for playing both the smallest and the largest roles—literally—in The Lord of the Rings film trilogy. As Gimli, the Fellowship of the Ring's cantankerous dwarf, Rhys-Davies provides Peter Jackson's fantasy epic with some much-needed comedic relief, while as the ent Treebeard Rhys-Davies provides a voice for the quiet, righteous anger that leads to the wizard Saruman's eventual downfall.

In addition to his eclectic and lengthy filmography (Rhys-Davies has appeared in well over a hundred movies, television shows, video games, and cartoons, including a recurring role on MTV's fantasy series, The Shannara Chronicles), Rhys-Davies is also well known for his conservative political opinions, which don't always jibe with Hollywood's prevailing liberalism—or, as Rhys-Davies puts it, "Every time I open my mouth, I may be committing career suicide."

In 2004, Rhys-Davies made headlines after he called Europe's Muslim population "a demographic catastrophe." In 2015, he lamented the fall of "Western European Christian civilization" and claimed that, thanks to political correctness, "we have lost our moral compass completely"—views that have cost Rhys-Davies a handful of friendships. He also came out in favor of the UK's controversial "Brexit" campaign, which involved a successful referendum to remove the United Kingdom from the European Union, but couldn't actually participate in the election. The Isle of Man, where Rhys-Davies lives, technically isn't part of the United Kingdom, making Rhys-Davies an expatriate and therefore ineligible to vote.

Wolf Kahler - Herman Dietrich

Many actors have played Nazis. Fewer have made a career out of it. By the time Wolf Kahler appeared in Raiders of the Lost Ark, he'd played a Nazi soldier in Force 10 from Navarone (alongside Ford, fresh off his star-making turn as Han Solo), The Boys from Brazil, and John Sturges' last film, The Eagle Has Landed, making him a perfect fit to play Herman Dietrich, one of Belloq's Nazi contacts in Raiders of the Lost Ark.

Not only is Kahler's career still going strong, but at age 76, he's still playing Nazis. Recently, Kahler played German commander Walter Model in the TV series Nazi Mega Weapons, had a role as a Nazi officer in BBC America's Fleming, and appeared as "Nazi" in 2012's Cockneys vs Zombies. Ironically, however, Kahler's best-known role might be a candy salesman—Kahler reportedly played the German ambassador in Ferrero Rocher's campy commercial "The Ambassador's Party."

Alfred Molina - Santipo

If you had to choose one actor from The Raiders of the Lost Ark to become a breakout star, it probably wouldn't be Santipo, Indiana Jones' ill-fated guide in the film's opening sequence. And yet, Alfred Molina parlayed his brief appearance in Indy's first adventure—his first experience in front of a camera—into a multi-decade film and television career that includes a stint as Spider-Man's arch-nemesis Doctor Octopus in Spider-Man 2, a leading role on Law & Order: LA, and an Emmy-nominated turn in Ryan Murphy's television drama The Normal Heart.

While Molina often plays bad guys—"I have no problem with playing villains. In fact, it put my two kids through college!" he quipped in a recent interview—off-screen, he's dedicated to humanitarian causes. In 2013, Molina helped Joseph Kibler, a young filmmaker who's both a paraplegic and HIV-positive, create Walk On, a documentary about Kibler's life. More recently, Molina has become a staunch advocate for Alzheimer's research—his wife, of over 30 years, actress Jill Gascoine, announced that she had the disease in 2013.

That's been a struggle for Molina, who tries to take Gascoine's illness one day at a time. "Things happen and you have to go with them, adapt," he said, adding, "A lot of people are fighting the same battle as me."

George Harris - Simon Katanga

Many actors would love to be a part of one major franchise. George Harris got to be part of two. In 2007, 26 years after he appeared in Raiders of the Lost Ark as smuggler Captain Katanga, Harris appeared in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix as Kingsley Shacklebolt, a Dumbledore-friendly double agent inside of the Ministry of Magic. Harris returned as Shacklebolt in both halves of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

Outside of acting work, Harris is an online advocate for Florida's controversial Hippocrates Health Institute. While Harris calls Hippocrates a "temple of healing," not everyone agrees. Hippocrates Health Institute co-director Brian Clement claims that the Institute can cure both multiple sclerosis and cancer, leading scientists and medical professionals to call him a "quack" and accuse him of fraud. In 2015, Florida's health department filed a cease-and-desist order against Clement and ordered him to stop practicing medicine, but dropped the charges about a month later.

Ronald Lacey - Arnold Toht

As the bespectacled Gestapo agent Arnold Toht, Ronald Lacey's most memorable moment in Raiders of the Lost Ark comes at the end, when the Ark's mystical powers melt his face off, but don't sell Lacey short. A decorated stage and screen actor, Lacey brought almost two decades of experience to the Raiders set, and spent most of the '80s playing villains in movies like Red Sonja and Clint Eastwood's Firefox.

Lacey returned in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, in which he played the Himmler to Michael Sheard's Hitler in a brief, uncredited cameo, but died just a couple of years later. Thankfully, Lacey's legacy lives on through his daughter, British actress Rebecca Lacey, who claims her father's performance in Raiders of the Lost Ark sparked her own interest in acting.

"I remember going to a cast and crew showing of the film in Leicester Square," the younger Lacey told the Star in a recent interview. "My dad said to us 'I don't know what this will be like—sorry if it's a bit boring.'"

It wasn't, of course, and from that moment on, Rebecca knew she wanted to follow in her father's footsteps. Not that she told him—at least not right away. "Having two parents who were actors," Rebecca explained, "it's the last thing they want,"

Denholm Elliott - Marcus Brody

As Marcus Brody, Indiana Jones' surrogate father, Denholm Elliott walks the line between a knowledgeable mentor (Raiders of the Lost Ark) and a bumbling, absent-minded professor (Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade). In reality, Elliott was an accomplished and prolific actor with over 120 credits to his name and a personal history that involved fighting against the real-life Nazis.

In fact, Elliott may never have become an actor if he hadn't been shot down by the Germans during World War II. As a young adult, Elliott was kicked out of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, but he spent his three years in a Nazi prison camp performing in amateur theater productions, and kept acting after the war ended.

After Raiders of the Lost Ark, Elliott spent the rest of the '80s as fixture at Hollywood awards ceremonies. He won the Best Supporting Actor BAFTA three years in a row—the only actor to ever do so—for his roles in Trading Places, A Private Function, and Defense of the Realm. He was nominated again for 1985's A Room with a View, which also netted him a nomination for an Oscar. In 1988, Elliott was named a Commander of the Order of the British Empire.

Unfortunately, Elliot's streak ended in the late '80s after he was diagnosed with HIV, and he ultimately succumbed to tuberculosis in 1992. Still, that didn't stop Brody from making a brief appearance in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull: in the film, a statue outside of Marshall College, Indy's home base, stands as tribute to both Brody and the man who played him.