List of Indiana Jones characters
This is a list of characters in the Indiana Jones series.
- 1 Introduced in Raiders of the Lost Ark
- 2 Introduced in Temple of Doom
- 3 Introduced in The Last Crusade
- 4 Introduced in The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles
- 5 Introduced in Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
- 6 Introduced in other media
- 7 References
Introduced in Raiders of the Lost Ark
Dr. Henry Walton Indiana Jones, Jr. (Harrison Ford), the titular character of the franchise, is an archaeologist and college professor who leads a double life as a globe-trotting fortune hunter seeking out rare antiquities. "Indiana" is a nickname he adopted from childhood; it was the name of his pet dog. Wearing a fedora and armed with a revolver and a bull whip, Indiana is regularly confronted by villains, booby traps, and snakes, of which he is deathly afraid. Actors who have portrayed Indiana at different ages include River Phoenix, Corey Carrier, Sean Patrick Flanery, and George Hall.
Satipo (Alfred Molina) is a guide accompanying Indy in the temple in the film's opening. He follows behind him through the temple's traps on the way in. When Indy and Satipo reach a pit on the way out, Satipo makes it over with Indy's whip and Indy is stuck on the other side. Indy throws over the fertility idol to Satipo, who offered to throw him his whip for it; but he betrays Indy, dropping the whip and fleeing. In his haste, he forgot to mind the wall trap he had witnessed Indy test and is killed; Indiana makes it out.
In an early script of the film, written by Lawrence Kasdan, Satipo flees the boulder with Indy, only to be met with Barranca's ultimate fate in the finished film and killed by the Hovito tribe, but the script was scrapped.
He appears in the video game Indiana Jones and the Infernal Machine (1999) in the secret level "Return to Peru", where Indiana returns to the same temple and finds the second idol.
Jock Lindsey (Fred Sorenson) is an American freelance pilot. Jock cut his teeth as a stunt pilot performing in Midwest airshows and relocated to Venezuela after a rumored flight-related tragedy. He frequently was hired by Jones to fly the archaeologist to remote parts of the world. Easygoing and affable, Jock butted heads with Indiana on only one subject: his pet snake Reggie. According to the novelization of Raiders of the Lost Ark written by Campbell Black (1981), Jock is Scottish. The "Jock Lindsey's Hangar Bar" cocktail lounge at Disney Springs says he settled down in central Florida in 1938.
Barranca (Vic Tablian) is the other Peruvian guide who turns against Indiana. When Barranca draws a revolver, Indy uses his famous bullwhip and wraps the whip around the gun. The gun is yanked from Barranca's hand and lands in a stream. Barranca then runs away but is later killed with poisonous darts by the Hovitos tribe.
In the early script of the film, written by Lawrence Kasdan, when Barranca pulls his gun out on Jones, the archaeologist uses his whip to make Barranca shoot himself, but the script was scrapped.
Dr. René Emile Belloq (Paul Freeman) is a French archaeologist who takes credit for Indiana's findings by following his exploits and then securing the artifacts after Indiana completes efforts to initially retrieve it. In the film's opening, Belloq and the Hovitos tribesmen force Indiana to hand over a fertility idol he has braved numerous booby traps to obtain. Belloq aids the Nazis in finding the Ark of the Covenant, as he wants to use the relic to speak with God. The spirits within the Ark kill Belloq and the Nazis when it is opened, allowing Indiana to take the Ark back to the United States government. At one point in the film, Belloq says to Indy that they are very much alike and that he is Indy's "shadowy reflection".
The novelization of the movie reveals Belloq became Indiana's foe at graduate school, when he plagiarized his essay on stratigraphy, thus winning an award that rightfully belonged to Indiana. Another encounter in 1934 is detailed, when Indiana spends months preparing a dig in Rub' al Khali, only to arrive and discover Belloq has excavated the region. Indiana also encounters Belloq in two novels by Max McCoy, set before the films, where the two meet for the first time (contradicting the novelization of Raiders of the Lost Ark) and Belloq gives Indiana information for locating a crystal skull.
Belloq's first name was Emile in an August 1979 draft of the script, and Marion was originally more infatuated with him. Spielberg considered Jacques Dutronc and Giancarlo Giannini for the part before casting Freeman: he noticed that he had very piercing eyes while watching Death of a Princess. Belloq was intended to appear in the prequel Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, but was written out for unknown reasons. He was set to appear in The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, but the show was canceled before his third season: he and the 21-year-old Indiana would have become friends in Honduras in 1920, although his ruthless traits would be exhibited by stealing and selling a crystal skull to F. A. Mitchell-Hedges. He would have aided Indiana and Percy Fawcett in Brazil in an episode set in 1921. He was also intended to appear in the canceled Dark Horse Comics limited series Indiana Jones and the Lost Horizon, where he appears in the prologue discovering a fake Turin Shroud in New York City in 1926.
In an early script of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, called Indiana Jones and the City of the Gods, written by Frank Darabont, the Nazis were set to appear seeking revenge of Belloq and Toht's death, but the script was rejected.
Kenner released a 3.75" action figure (dressed in Jewish robes) in late 1982, which was available by mail order until 1983. A Belloq figure in normal clothes was also released in 1983. He was included in a TSR, Inc. collection of metal miniatures the following year. Hasbro released a 3 ¾" Belloq in Jewish robes in 2008 (which comes with the fertility idol). An Adventure Heroes figurine, which comes with the Ark and a murderous spirit, will also be released. Lego made a Belloq figure for a playset based on the Raiders opening sequence.
Lawrence Kasdan, the writer of Raiders, was the original choice for the role of Belloq, but he declined.
Marcus Brody (Denholm Elliott) is an academic and curator who has known Indy since he was a child. Brody was friends with Indy's father, Henry Sr., and served as something of a surrogate father figure, as Indy did not get along well with his own father. In the film, Brody makes a deal with government agents that Indy will recover the Ark of the Covenant and put it in a museum, but the agents put it away in a top secret hiding place (Hangar 51), much to his disappointment. He reappeared in The Last Crusade (1989), aiding Indiana on the search for his father and getting captured by the Nazis. In 1940, Marcus Brody retired as curator of the National Museum and accepted a position as Dean of Students at Marshall College. After he died in 1952, Indy lobbied hard for the bronze statue of Brody featured in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull on the Marshall College grounds. The statue of Brody lists his years of service as Dean of Students from 1939 to 1944. Denholm Elliot's death in 1992 was written into Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull with the death of his character.
Spielberg cast Elliott in the role because he was a fan of the actor. His return in Crusade was motivated by the director's desire to have the film hew closer to Raiders. He was initially portrayed in the first film as a knowledgeable, accomplished archaeologist in his own right, with much apparent field work under his belt, and tells Indy that he would accompany him on his quest but for other responsibilities. By the third film in the series, his character had changed to a somewhat bumbling figure who Indy mentions had gotten lost in his own museum and provided much of the film's comic relief. Brody has also appeared in Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis, the Marvel Comics Indiana Jones series, a Young Indiana Jones book and the Bantam novels series.
Marion Ravenwood (Karen Allen) had an affair with Indiana in 1926, which ended abruptly when her father Abner Ravenwood (Jones' mentor) discovered their romance. Ten years later, a resentful Marion is forced to aid Indiana in retrieving the Ark of the Covenant after her bar in Nepal is burned down by Arnold Ernst Toht and his thugs. Marion was a regular supporting character in the Marvel Comics series set after the film, and Allen reprised the role for Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull in 2008.
According with Steven Spielberg, Marion was set to appear in the prequel Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, along her father Abner, but George Lucas scrapped the idea. During the development of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, an early draft, called Indiana Jones and the Saucermen from Mars, written by Jeb Stuart, Marion was set to appear in the wedding of Indy and Dr. Elaine McGregor, alongside Sallah, Short Round, and Willie Scott, but the draft was rejected. In other early script, titled Indiana Jones and the City of the Gods, written by Frank Darabont, Marion was set to appear again as Indy's partner, but this draft was also scrapped.
In 2008, Allen expressed interest in reprise her role of Ravenwood in the upcoming fifth movie.
Debra Winger was the original choice for portray Ravenwood, but she declined.
Arnold Ernst Toht
Major Arnold Ernst Toht (Ronald Lacey) is the Gestapo agent who attempts to steal the medallion from Marion, but his hand is badly burned by it, as it had been engulfed in flames prior to his grabbing it. The scarred inscription on his hand is used by the Nazis to pinpoint the Ark's location, but as his hand lacks the code on its other side, they end up digging in the wrong area. His face melts after he is exposed to the supernatural powers of the Ark; in the novelization Toht dies when Gobler's car flies off a cliff. In a sequel comic book, Indy is confronted by his vengeful sister Ilsa.
Toht was called Belzig in the August 1979 draft of the script. Spielberg wanted him to be a cyborg, with a metal arm that could transform into a flamethrower and machine gun. The 1979 script gave him a light in place of a right eye. Lucas rejected these as too far-fetched. Lacey was cast as Toht, as he reminded Spielberg of Peter Lorre. Klaus Kinski turned down the role, as he hated the script. Lacey later made a cameo appearance in The Last Crusade as Heinrich Himmler, opposite Michael Sheard (who auditioned for Toht) as Adolf Hitler.
In an early script of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, titled Indiana Jones and the City of the Gods, written by Frank Darabont, the Nazis were set to appear seeking revenge for Toht and Belloq's death, but the script was rejected.
Oberst Herman Dietrich (Wolf Kahler) is the arrogant Wehrmacht commander of the Tanis project. He was chosen by Hitler because of his ruthless efficiency. He expresses doubt over Belloq's desire to perform a "Jewish ritual" with the Ark. He also calls Captain Katanga a "savage", due to the captain hinting at selling Marion Ravenwood into slavery. He is killed when the Ark is opened, the sheer heat shrinking his head.
In the early script of the film, written by Lawrence Kasdan, Dietrich's surname was Herman Shliemannn, and also, he was set to survive during the Ark of the Covenant's opening. After this, he was set to chase (along other surviving Nazis) Marion and Indy in a mine car chase. However, the script was scrapped and the mine car chase was recycled for Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.
Sallah Mohammed Faisel el-Kahir (John Rhys-Davies) is a burly Egyptian excavator and a friend of Indiana. He reappeared in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. He also appeared in a Marvel comic, a Young Indiana Jones book (which detailed his first meeting with Indiana in 1913), and two Bantam novels.
In Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, Sallah doesn't appear physically, but he appears in a photo in Indy's office. In an interview of TheForce.net, Davies told that Steven Spielberg offered him to return as Sallah in a cameo, but he declined. During the development of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, an early draft titled Indiana Jones and the Saucermen from Mars, written by Jeb Stuart, Sallah was set to appear in the wedding of Indy and Dr. Elaine McGregor, along with Marion Ravenwood, Short Round, and Willie Scott, but the draft was scrapped. In February 20, 2016, Davies expressed interest in reprise his role of Sallah in the upcoming fifth movie.
The Cairo Swordsman (Terry Richards) appears when Marion is being kidnapped by Nazi forces. The entire crowd moves aside when the swordsman appears, swinging his scimitar and coercing Indiana into a battle. Jones sighs, pulls out his revolver and shoots him, causing the crowd to burst into cheers. The gag came about because Harrison Ford was suffering from dysentery and did not want to spend three days filming a "conventional" fight. On the first take, Richards "took a minute-and-a-half to die", so on the next take, Ford shot him so quickly that Richards fell over in surprise. Ford would later say he felt sorry for Richards because "he worked so hard on that swordplay".
Richards felt "it turned out to be the funniest thing in the film", and was surprised he was not cut out of the picture. Many, including Lucas, disliked the brutality of the gag, and Richards concurred the joke was very morbid. Nevertheless, it was placed 38th on Empire's Top 50 film gags list, and it is one of Spielberg's favorite scenes in the series. Kenner released a 3.75" figure of the swordsman in 1982. Walt Disney Parks & Resorts released a figurine of the swordsman in a box set in January 2001 (to scale with the Micro Machines vehicles models), and a 4.5" figure in August 2003. In 2008, Hasbro released a 3 ¾" action figure, an Adventure Heroes figure, and a 12" figure.
Major Gobler (Anthony Higgins) is a German major of the military contingent attached to the Tanis project. He is personally chosen by Hitler due to his ruthlessness and efficiency. Gobler is strict whereas Dietrich is practical. He dies when the truck driven by Jones rams his car, sending it flying off a cliff.
Simon Katanga (George Harris), is a friend of Sallah and the captain of the Bantu Wind, a tramp steamer Indiana and Marion use to transport the Ark to the United States. When his ship is boarded by the Nazis, he covers for them by claiming he killed Indiana and intends to sell Marion for a sexual purpose; Colonel Dietrich believes him and calls him a savage. He reappears in a Marvel Comics sequel, where Indiana bails him from a Panama City jail after being charged with rum-running. Katanga and his crew take Indiana to the Aleutian Islands, where they are attacked by pirates, who commandeer the Bantu Wind. Following a battle, Katanga regains his ship.
Abner Ravenwood is Marion's father and an unseen character. He was Indiana's mentor at the University of Chicago, but the two split in 1926 when Indiana had an affair with the teenage Marion. The Ark of the Covenant was his lifelong obsession, and he owned the headpiece to the Staff of Ra, which could pinpoint its location. He is said to be dead when Indiana and the Nazis come to Nepal (where the Ravenwoods live) in 1936, to use it to find the Ark at Tanis. The novelization details he died in an avalanche in 1936.
In Marvel Comics' The Further Adventures of Indiana Jones, it is hinted that Abner is alive when Indiana and Marion travel to the fictitious city Ra-Lundi to free its people from the power of a meteorite: Indiana is briefly aided by a masked man. Abner is in the back-story to a gamebook, where he lost an ebony dove from Malakula after being chased off by the island's inhabitants in 1927; five years later Indiana and his cousin must retrieve it. A supplement to a role-playing game said that Abner studied under Franz Boas, and disliked the British for their "armchair anthropology", in which they made assumptions about other cultures based on reports instead of exploring themselves.
Abner was set to appear along his daughter Marion in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, but George Lucas scrapped the idea. In the early scripts of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, Fedora was intended to be Abner, but the idea was rejected. Abner was intended to appear in the canceled third season of The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, when a ten-year-old Indiana meets him searching for the Ark on the Temple Mount. The canceled Dark Horse Comics limited series Indiana Jones and the Lost Horizon was going to depict him and Indiana recovering the headpiece to the Staff of Ra in Tibet in 1926. Artist Hugh Fleming modeled Abner's appearance on actor Wilford Brimley, and the series would explain that Abner taught Indiana to behave cynically with others, so that they would not think he was crazy if he mentioned his encounters with the supernatural. The character was also intended to appear in the 2003 video game Indiana Jones and the Emperor's Tomb (set in 1935, before Temple of Doom) but the developers of the game deemed his role as Indy's partner "too unwieldy".
Introduced in Temple of Doom
Wilhelmina "Willie" Scott (Kate Capshaw) is an American singer working at Club Obi Wan (whose name is a reference to the Star Wars character Obi-Wan Kenobi) in Shanghai who is caught up in Indiana's adventures and becomes his love interest in the film. Unlike Marion, she is more of a damsel in distress. The novelization details Willie was born in Missouri to a wealthy family, and moved to Shanghai as she was unable to break into Hollywood during the Great Depression. She also claims to know Al Capone (whom Indy met in 1920) and Frank Nitti. She returns to the United States following her adventure. Spielberg liked the character of Willie:
"Willie has led this pampered life and feels that's what's due her — to be cared for and looked after. She meets Indiana Jones, a person unlike anyone she has ever been involved with, and ends up going off with him. In the course of all their adventures, all of her earlier life is stripped away from her, and Willie must fall back on her own resources. She discovers that she is a very strong woman, a gutsy lady. Willie is a much different character than the woman Karen Allen played in Raiders."
In Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, she doesn't appear physically, but appears in a photo in Indy's office. In an early script of the film, called Indiana Jones and the Saucermen of Mars, written by Jeb Stuart, Willie was set to appear in Indy and Dr. Elaine McGregor's wedding, along with Sallah, Short Round, and Marion Ravenwood, but the script was rejected. In another early script, titled Indiana Jones and the City of the Gods, written by Frank Darabont, Scott was set to be mentioned by Indy, but this other script was also rejected.
Willie was named after Spielberg's dog. Spielberg wanted Willie to be a complete contrast to Marion, so Capshaw dyed her brown hair blonde for the part. Spielberg married Capshaw in 1991. A Willie figure was made by LJN in 1984, but was never released, although an unpainted metal miniature of her was made for a TSR, Inc. collection that year. She has appeared in two Lego sets: Shanghai Chase, and The Temple of Doom.
The character has received largely negative reviews, due to her whiny personality, constant need to be rescued and the fact that (unlike Marion Ravenwood and Elsa Schneider) she's unnecessary to the story outside of being a love interest.
Lao Che (Roy Chiao) is a Chinese gangster who promises Indiana a diamond in return for the ashes of Nurhaci. Indiana Jones recovers the ashes of Nurhaci, but Che sends a member of his gang to steal the urn while Indiana is sleeping; Indiana breaks the fist of the member and then shows up to Club Obi Wan to make the exchange; Che gives him the diamond and takes the urn, but instead poisons him and offers the poison's antidote in exchange for returning the diamond. Indiana gives him the diamond but Lao Che refuses and begins a gunfight. Indiana, Short Round, and Willie Scott (who he threatened for the antidote) escape with the antidote and leaves Shanghai unknowingly on a plane owned by Lao Che. Che orders the pilots to parachute out of the plane in hopes of killing Indiana when the plane crashes, but Indiana deploys a raft and lands safely on the ground. Che has two sons, Kao Kan and Chen, the latter of whom is killed by Indiana when Che and Indiana meet for the exchange, getting impaled by a skewer of pigeon flambé. In the Bantam novel Indiana Jones and the Dinosaur Eggs, Indiana meets Lao Che for the first time in 1933 at a nightclub he owns in Shanghai.
Before the death of Roy Chiao, Steven Spielberg was planning to return Che in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, but he declined the idea after Chiao's death in 1999. Also, Ric Young, the actor that portrayed Kao Kan, expressed interest in reprise his role of Kan in the movie, but he declined after Roy's death.
Wu Han (David Yip), allies with Indiana during his battle with Lao Che. He is killed by Chen. Max McCoy's prequel novel Indiana Jones and the Dinosaur Eggs detailed Wu first met Indiana in 1914, during his trip to China with his father. Years later, he is studying political science when his parents and sister die in an influenza outbreak. Their ashes wind up in the possession of Che, who uses the promise of a proper burial to force Wu into servitude. In 1933, Indiana meets Wu in Shanghai on his way to Mongolia, and steals his family's ashes from Che, securing his old friend's freedom. Indiana inspires him to study archaeology upon his return to school. Wu also aids Indiana in the 2003 video game Indiana Jones and the Emperor's Tomb, set just before Temple of Doom. He regularly arranges Jones's transportation.
He is essential in freeing Indiana and Pankot's Maharaja from Mola Ram's psychic control. The novelization explains that Short Round was born Wan Li (Chinese: 萬麗) in 1924. Despite attending a Christian school, he respects Chinese mythology, and believes that the baby elephant that transports him in India is a reincarnation of his brother Chu. He immigrates to the United States with Jones following his adventure. In the film, Short Round is frequently heard speaking the Cantonese dialect of Chinese (despite being born in Wu dialect-speaking Shanghai), as well as English.
In an early script of the Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, called Indiana Jones and the Saucermen from Mars, written by Jeb Stuart, Short Round (now an adult) was set to appear in the wedding of Indy and Dr. Elaine McGregor, alongside Sallah, Marion Ravenwood, and Willie Scott, but the script was scrapped by George Lucas and Steven Spielberg.
Short Round was named after Temple of Doom screenwriters Willard Huyck and Gloria Katz's dog. Lucas's initial idea for Indiana's sidekick was a virginal young princess, but Huyck, Katz and Spielberg disliked the idea. The character's name may also have been a homage to the early Samuel Fuller film The Steel Helmet, in which a young Korean boy of the same name acts as a guide for the protagonist. Around 6,000 actors auditioned worldwide for the part: Quan was cast after his brother auditioned for the role. Spielberg liked his personality, so he and Ford improvised the scene where Short Round accuses Indiana of cheating during a card game. Quan had a martial arts instructor to help him on set.
The character cameoed in an issue of Marvel Comics' The Further Adventures of Indiana Jones, rescuing Indiana from a pirate attack in the Caribbean, before he returns to boarding school. The Lost Journal of Indiana Jones, published in 2008, detailed Short Round becoming an archaeologist and tracked down the Peacock's Eye (the diamond from Doom's opening sequence) to Niihau.
He also appeared in the non-canonical crossover story in Star Wars Tales, where he and Indiana discover the remains of Han Solo in the crashed Millennium Falcon in the Pacific Northwest. A Short Round action figure was planned by LJN in 1984, but was never released. However, an unpainted metal miniature of him was released by TSR that year. He appears in the 2009 Lego sets Shanghai Chase and The Temple of Doom.
Empire named Short Round as their sixteenth favorite element of the films, explaining "you could argue that Shortie is the real hero of Temple of Doom – while the titular relic hunter is off searching for fortune and glory, it's Short Round's moral compass that keeps the adventure on the right track". In 2008 a poll conducted by movietickets.com to coincide with the release of Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, named Short Round "favorite Indy sidekick".
The brother of Jonathan Ke Quan was considered for the role of Round, but he declined.
Chattar Lal (Roshan Seth) is the Prime Minister of Pankot and personal representative and chief advisor of Maharaja Zalim Singh. He graduated from Oxford and speaks English with a pronounced accent as a result, and also knows well Indiana's reputation. Like Indiana he was apparently forced to drink the Blood of Kali by Mola Ram, controlling him, and the young Maharaja. During the attempted sacrifice of Willie Scott, Lal is injured by Indiana when he gets caught in the wheel used to lower victims into the lava pit. He is last seen crawling away and collapsing, but disappears after this. It is unknown if he escaped.
In an early script of the film, Lal was set to have a more important role, but the script was rejected. In other early script, Lal was intended to be killed by Indy throwing him into the lava pit, but the script was scrapped.
In the novelization, Chattar Lal is thrown into the lava pit while in the film he is injured but he doesn't die, whereas in Lego Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures, he is blown apart by a blast of heat caused by Indy and Short Round.
Maharaja Zalim Singh (Raj Singh) is the ruler of Pankot Palace. He is a young boy, probably a year or two older than Short Round. Despite considering the Thuggee an evil cult and vowing that they would never return, it is revealed that Singh is an unwilling member, having been forced to drink the Blood of Kali. During Indiana's fight against the chief Thuggee guard, Singh hinders Indiana by using a voodoo doll. He is stopped by Short Round, who burns him with a torch, releasing him from the Black Sleep of Kali. He atones for his crimes by telling Short Round how he, Indiana, and Willie can escape from the mines. He also apparently alerts British troops about the recent events, as he is seen among them when they arrive to battle the Thuggee after Mola Ram's death.
In an early script of the film, Singh was set to have a more important role, but the script was scrapped.
Mola Ram (Amrish Puri) is the Thuggee high priest. He has made Pankot Palace his lair and wants to use the five Sankara Stones to set up the reign of Kali. To that end, Mola Ram enslaves the children of a village that had one of the Stones (the taking of it bringing his total to three). They mine for the other two and for gems to fund his cause in catacombs underneath the palace. He also brainwashes people, including local politicians and royalty, with the "blood of Kālī Ma"—a magic potion—to make them devout followers (unless they are exposed to extreme pain, such as a burn). Indiana eventually confronts Mola Ram over a nearby gorge, calling on the power of Shiva to use the Stones against the evil cleric, who is burned by them and falls into the river where he is devoured by crocodiles. In the novelization, Ram's death is the same but he returns to normal when he burns his hand on the stone; Indy tries to pull him to safety but Ram falls to his death.
Mola Ram is named after an 18th-century Indian painter. Lucas wanted Mola Ram to be terrifying, so Huyck and Katz added elements of Aztec and Hawaiian human sacrificers, and European devil worship, to the character. To create his headdress, make-up artist Tom Smith based the skull on a cow (as this would be sacrilegious) with a latex shrunken head. Puri was chosen as Spielberg and Lucas did not want to cast a European actor and apply dark make-up. In the role, Puri resembles Eduardo Ciannelli, who played the cult leader in Gunga Din, an inspiration on the film.
In an early script of the movie, the burning Sankara Stones actually release Mola Ram from the same "Black Sleep of the Kali Ma" he inflicts on Jones before falling to his death, hinting that he may not have been in control of his actions. It was also intended that Mola Ram, after falling from the bridge, be killed by landing on the embankment below, followed by the crocodiles tearing apart his corpse. However, this script was scrapped and rejected.
A 6-inch action figure and an unpainted metal miniature of Mola Ram was released in 1984. In 2008, Hasbro released several Mola Ram items as part of their Indiana Jones toy line, including a 3 3⁄4-inch action figure, an Adventure Heroes figure, and a Mighty Muggs figure. A "One Coin" (caricature) figure of Mola, standing 1.97" (5 cm) was released in Japan in 2008.
The Chief Guard (Pat Roach) was the commander of Mola Ram's Thuggee guards and also helped oversee the enslaved children in the mines that were under Pankot Palace in 1935. He was a very ruthless, coldhearted man. At the end he has a big fight with Indiana Jones and died in a machine.
Captain Phillip Blumburtt
Captain Phillip Blumburtt (Philip Stone) is a British Indian Army officer who commands troops of the 11th Poona Rifles, is frequently sent to inspect Pankot Palace on behalf of the British government. He is alerted to the evil of Pankot Palace apparently by Little Maharajah to deal with the remaining Thuggees, his men kill them so Indy and Willie can escape.
In an early draft of the film, Blumburtt was set to have a more important role, but the draft was rejected.
Introduced in The Last Crusade
Herman Mueller (J. J. Hardy) is Indiana's fellow Boy Scout in the 1912 prologue, who brings Indiana to the Sheriff's attention after his battle with outlaws for the Cross of Coronado. He reappears as Indiana's sidekick in the English and French Young Indiana Jones novels, which introduces his archaeologist father Herman Senior.
Garth, also known as Fedora (Richard Young), is a treasure hunter who appears in the 1912 prologue. Garth is the leader of a treasure hunter gang who find the Cross of Coronado which is stolen by a teenage Jones. Garth and his men pursue Jones by car and follow him on a train. Garth saves Jones' life when Jones falls into a lion car and then tries to reclaim the cross. Jones escapes with the cross and runs home. However Garth gets the Moab sheriff on their side and Jones is told to give the cross back. Garth however consoles Jones, admiring the young man's attempts to claim it. He then gives Jones his fedora before walking out.
In an early draft of the film, Fedora was intended to be Dr. Abner Ravenwood, but the draft was scrapped and rejected.
The Sheriff (Marc Miles) is, as the name implies, the local law enforcement official in Moab, Utah. The Sheriff has no mentioned name. The Sheriff is first mentioned when Indiana Jones instructs Herman to find the Sheriff and alert him that grave robbers are digging in a cave in Arches National Park. Herman does what he says bringing the Sheriff to the Jones residence. Indiana hands the Sheriff the cross of Coronado and tells him that there were "five or six of them." The Sheriff takes the cross and tells Jones that Panama Hat and his gang were the rightful owners of the cross, calling Fedora & his gang as witnesses to prove it, and he will not press charges against Jones if he gives the cross back. He hands the cross to Fedora who sells it to Panama Hat. He then bids Indiana farewell with a tip of his hat before walking out.
Henry Jones, Sr.
Dr. Henry Walton Jones, Sr. (Sean Connery) is Indiana's estranged father, who was distant from his son due to his obsessive study of the Holy Grail and its possible location. Kidnapped by Nazis in 1938, his son rescues him and in the process of racing the Nazis to the Grail's location, they become closer. Alex Hyde-White stood in for Connery in the film's 1912 prologue, and the character was played by Lloyd Owen in The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, which showed his anger at his son running away to fight in World War I. He also appeared in the Young Indiana Jones novels and the graphic novel Indiana Jones and the Spear of Destiny (set in 1945). At the time of the events of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull in 1957, it appears the elder Dr. Jones has already died in 1951.
Walter Donovan (Julian Glover) is an American businessman who desires the Holy Grail in order to achieve immortality. He secretly works with the Nazis, and sends both Indiana and his father on the search for the Grail without their knowledge of his ties to Germany. He shoots Henry and forces Indy to clear the traps for him. After Indy does so, Donovan and Elsa follow him into a room filled with cups, one of which is the Grail. Elsa purposefully chooses a false grail—a bejeweled gold cup—for Donovan, but when he drinks from it, his body crumbles to dust in seconds.
Glover enjoyed playing the part because of the character's ambiguous nature:
"What would you do, if you had the chance of having eternal life? That's quite a question. Where would you draw the line? People say [Donovan] was a Nazi, he wasn't a Nazi, he joined the Nazi Party in order to investigate its property, and he bloody nearly got that. Only because he was greedy did he [fall]. This is an advice for you [the viewer]: always choose the pewter cup. It applies to everything. An allegory for life."
In an early script of the film, Walter's surname was set to be Walter Chandler, and he was set to die in Hatay, when the Nazi tank fall off a cliff (a fate that which would later go to Ernst Vogel), but the script was scrapped and changed.
Panama Hat (Tim Hiser and Paul Maxwell) is a minor villain who appears in the prologue of the film. He hired grave robbers to dig up the Cross of Coronado, which is immediately stolen by a teenage Jones. A horse chase and pursuit on board a circus train follow. Indy escapes, returns to his home, and attempts to talk to his father, who rebuffs him. The Sheriff arrives with Panama Hat's men, and Indy is forced to give the Cross back. Panama Hat is seen taking back the cross and handing a stack of money to the gang.
In 1938 Jones steals the Cross again, this time on a ship, but is caught. He struggles with the villain's men and gets the cross back. Indy jumps off the ship as a giant fuel drum rolls wildly, falling directly onto a crate of TNT. The crate explodes, causing the entire ship to blow and killing Panama Hat and his crew.
In the novelization of the story, it is stated that Indiana's final showdown with Panama Hat began because he got word from a worker of the villain that his boss had an affair with his wife and he wanted revenge. Jones realized it was a set-up and was told by Panama Hat that he had been hit badly by the Great Depression and was auctioning the cross off to wealthy buyers. He got one deal from a buyer with a provision that said he had to kill Jones. Indy would later suspect the buyer was Walter Donovan.
Dr. Elsa Schneider (Alison Doody) is an Austrian archaeologist who desires the Grail, and like Donovan, keeps her involvement with the Nazis a secret. She is revealed to have seduced both Joneses, Henry first and then Indiana. Later, she deliberately picks a false grail for Donovan to eliminate competition, and watches him decay before her eyes. Afterwards, she crosses the temple's seal with the Grail, causing the temple to collapse and her to drop the Grail as well as nearly falling into a chasm. Indy catches her, but she sees the Grail on a shelf of rock and greedily reaches for it despite Indy's warnings. She overreaches and Indy loses his grip on her, causing her to fall to her death. According to Doody, Elsa's role as a femme fatale was an attempt to distance the character from Willie Scott.
In an early script of the film, Elsa was going to be the one who shot Henry Jones, Sr. in the Holy Grail Temple, and she was set to die after drinking from the False Grail (a fate that which would later go to Walter Donovan), but the script was scrapped and changed.
Kazim (Kevork Malikyan) is the leader of the Brotherhood of the Cruciform Sword, an ancient organization protecting the secrets of the Holy Grail. Kazim initially attempts to kill Indy and Elsa during a spectacular boatchase in Venice, but after recognizing Indy does not want the Grail for selfish purposes, gives him the location of his father. Kazim later leads an attack on the Nazi convoy heading for the Grail's location, but is killed. When Kazim dies, it was intended that Elsa step away and see her hands covered in blood (as a homage to The Man Who Knew Too Much), but Spielberg was unsatisfied with each take. Malikyan was once in the running for the part of Sallah in the first film, but traffic made him late to the audition.
In the early script of the film, written by Jeffrey Boam, Kazim was set to be an agent of Hatay, named Kemal, seeking the Holy Grail and an ally of the Nazis. Also, he was set to die after drinking from the False Grail (a fate that which would later go to Walter Donovan), but the script was rejected and changed.
Standartenführer Ernst Vogel (Michael Byrne), also known as Herr Oberst (German for Mister Colonel), is an SS officer who aids Donovan in finding the Holy Grail. His main objective is to kill the Joneses—whom he hates because Indy killed three of his men in Castle Grunewald—on direct orders from Adolf Hitler. Vogel discovers Jones Sr. on a German zeppelin bound for Athens, but Indiana throws Vogel out the window just as the zeppelin is taking off. Later, Vogel and Donovan are heading towards the location of the Grail when Indiana ambushes their convoy. Indy and Vogel struggle on the back of a tank until it goes over a cliff. Vogel is killed in the ensuing crash.
In the early scripts of the movie, Vogel actually makes it to the Holy Grail Temple, and was set to be killed crushed by a rock while trying to steal the Grail. Later, his death was changed to that of being beheaded by the Holy Grail Temple's traps (a fate that which would later go to a Hatayan soldier), but the scripts were scrapped and changed.
The Grail Knight (Robert Eddison) was the youngest knight of 3 brothers set out to find the Holy Grail. In the late eleventh century, he and his two brothers (Richard and a third sibling) became Knights of the First Crusade. During their journeys in the Holy Land, they discovered the Holy Grail and protected it at the Temple of the Sun in the Canyon of the Crescent Moon for 150 years, using the Grail's power to extend their lifespans. Chosen to remain as the Grail's sole guardian because he was the bravest and most worthy, his two brothers traveled back to Europe, leaving behind two markers leading to the Grail's location. The Knight lived in a side chamber off of the inner sanctuary of the Temple of the Sun, and had a book to read by firelight.
In 1938, Indy enters the sanctuary. There the knight tries to fight him to determine who should protect the grail but falls from the weight of his own sword. Gracious in defeat, the knight tries to pass on the responsibility of protecting the grail to Jones. He is interrupted by the arrival of Walter Donovan and Elsa Schneider. Donovan asks which of the cups is the Grail. The knight refuses to tell Donovan saying that they must choose as a final test, also warning them that any of the false grails will take their lives. Donovan drinks from a golden jewel-encrusted grail, chosen for him by Elsa, but crumbles into dust within seconds. The knight sympathetically said Donovan "chose poorly." Indy on the other hand selects a wooden grail (the cup of a carpenter) and is told he had "chosen wisely."
The knight warns them that if they take the Holy Grail past the great seal they will forfeit their immortality. Elsa Schneider ignores the warning and falls into a chasm created by an earthquake. The knight is last seen waving goodbye to Indy as the temple collapses.
In the early scripts of the film, the Grail Knight was set to fight with Indy, but the script was scrapped and changed. However, this idea was used in the level "Temple of the Grail" of Lego Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures.
Introduced in The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles
Anna Mary Jones (Ruth de Sosa) is the mother of Indiana Jones. Very little had been established about the character prior to production, so de Sosa was allowed to create many aspects of the character, in addition to the basics that had been established by Lucas.
In the series, Indiana is shown to have a strong relationship with his mother, whom he calls "the sweetest, smartest, most wonderful woman who ever lived". In the unaired episode "Florence, May 1908" (later released as part of The Adventures of Young Indiana Jones: The Perils of Cupid), Anna briefly has an affair with composer Giacomo Puccini. She also reveals she is from Virginia. Although it is explained she died of scarlet fever in the series, it is contradicted in new footage shot for the 1999 re-edit, where Indiana explains she died of influenza. In The Lost Journal of Indiana Jones, it is stated that Anna died on March 3, 1912, aged 33 years.
She was first mentioned in passing in Raiders of the Lost Ark; Indy remarks Brody "sound[s] just like my mother" when discussing the dangers of finding the Ark. In Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, Indy's father Henry does mention that her death drove him and his son apart. Indy does believe that his mother "never understood" his father's obsession with the Holy Grail, though Henry says she supported him fully.
Previously, the 1989 computer game, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade: The Graphic Adventure, came with a replica of Henry's diary which had named her Mary. More recent publications, such as the Lost Journal of Indiana Jones, rectify this by making Mary her middle name.
Remy Baudouin (Ronny Coutteure) is a Belgian who becomes the comrade-in-arms and best friend to the young Indiana Jones during World War I. He meets the 16-year-old Indy in Mexico while fighting under Pancho Villa: he joined the Villistas because his Mexican wife Lupe had been murdered by the Federales. After seeing newsreel footage of the devastation of his country by the Germans in World War I, Remy resolves to return to Europe to join the Belgian army and defend his homeland, and Indy decides to join him. After fighting on the Western Front and being wounded, Remy wearies of life in the trenches and transfers with Indy to the Belgian forces fighting in Africa. They later transfer together to the secret service.
Miss Helen Seymour (Margaret Tyzack) is Indiana's tutor during his father's worldwide lecture tour from 1908 to 1910. Miss Seymour had taught Henry Jones, Snr. at the University of Oxford. In one of the final episodes broadcast in 1996, she dies just before Indiana returns to visit her in Oxford after the war has ended. Her maid gives him her final letter, in which she urges him to finish his education and reconcile with his father.
In a comic book adaptation of the first episode, it is explained she dislikes her old classmate T. E. Lawrence due to their divided religious beliefs (her father was a minister). Seymour also appears in three books based on the series. In one, she inherits a fortune, and is courted by a Colonel (whom Indiana is suspicious of) aboard the RMS Titanic.
T. E. Lawrence
A fictionalized version of T. E. Lawrence has a recurring role in the series. He first appeared in the pilot episode, Young Indiana Jones and the Curse of the Jackal, and appears or is mentioned multiple times throughout the series. Lawrence is portrayed by Joseph Bennett and Douglas Henshall.
Gray Cloud, a friend and sidekick of Indiana Jones, circa 1950. He is played by Saginaw Grant. He enlists Indy's help in 1950 when an ancient pipe is stolen from his tribe; a deadly chase through the snowy mountains of Wyoming ensues. Indy eventually retrieves the pipe for Gray Cloud.
Introduced in Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
George "Mac" McHale (Ray Winstone) is an anti-hero who is a friend with Jones. He is a spin on Sallah and Belloq. Mac served in MI6 during World War II, working with Indiana (who worked for the Office of Strategic Services). Writer David Koepp said Mac represents the confusion of the Cold War, with Winstone concurring "figuring out who you were working for and who you were working against must have been crazy". Mac's look was inspired by a photo of Ernest Hemingway wearing boots, so Winstone was told to tuck his pants into his boots and "rock" them throughout the film. Mac calls himself a "capitalist", and frequently makes his decision based upon what he gets in return. Mac is also extremely greedy, enthusiastic to accompany Indy to Akator, a "city of gold", and expresses clear frustration when Akator doesn't turn out to be what he expected, calling the venture a "waste of [his] time." Mac is eventually sucked into a vortex created by aliens to another dimension. It is not clear whether Mac is dead or simply in another dimension. However, some fans do agree that Mac letting go of Indy's whip was an uncharacteristically selfless act of sacrifice, letting the group go on instead of wasting time trying to save him.
Mac reappeared in the novel Indiana Jones and the Army of the Dead. Set after the second World War, he and Indiana battle German and Japanese agents, a voodoo priest and legions of the undead for the Heart of Darkness, an object made of pearl and ebony in Haiti.
Colonel Dr. Irina Spalko (Cate Blanchett) is a Soviet agent born in a small village in the eastern regions of the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, she was believed by those in her village to be a witch as her apparent psychic powers began to manifest themselves through animal control. An impressed Joseph Stalin inducted her into researching psychic warfare, awarding her with the Hero of Socialist Labor twice and the Order of Lenin three times. She is skilled in fencing and hand-to-hand combat and is Indiana's main antagonist as she brings the crystal skull to Akator to utilize the power there for her country's militant purposes. Her desire for knowledge proved her undoing when the crystal skull entity grants her desire to know everything, overloading her mind and causing her to disintegrate as her scattered essence is teleported to another dimension.
Frank Marshall said Spalko continued the tradition of Indiana having a love–hate relationship "with every woman he ever comes in contact with". Blanchett had wanted to play a villain for a "couple of years" before being cast. Spalko was modeled on Marlene Dietrich, while her bob cut was George Lucas' idea and was inspired by Louise Brooks.
In an early script of the film, Spalko was set to fight with Williams in a real virgin jungle, but the idea was scrapped because of the risks.
Uma Thurman was considered for the role of Spalko, but she declined.
Colonel Antonin Dovchenko (Igor Jijikine) leads a company of Soviet soldiers to aid Spalko on the quest for the crystal skull. He is ruthless and despises weakness. Dovchenko is large in stature and a brutal hand-to-hand combatant. The character is a tribute to the muscular henchman Pat Roach played in the first three films. He fights Indiana several times until Indy finally beats him and his dazed body gets carried off and eaten alive by siafu ants in the jungle. Hasbro released 3 ¾" and 12" action figures as well as an Adventure Heroes model, and is available in two Lego playsets.
General Bob Ross (Alan Dale) was an American general who Indiana Jones befriended during the second World War. In 1957, after Jones was coerced by Soviet agents to find alien remains in Hangar 51, he was trapped in Doom Town and barely survived. During his subsequent interrogation by FBI agents Smith and Taylor, General Ross arrived and vouched for Jones, insisting that he was not someone who would side with the Communists. Later, when George McHale revealed to Jones during a chase through the Amazon jungle that he was a double agent working for the CIA, he mentioned that General Ross was Mac's control agent, and McHale had secretly contacted him to bail Jones out of the aftermath of the Hangar 51 intrusion. Ross later attended Indiana's wedding to Marion Ravenwood.
Dean Charles Stanforth
Dean Charles Stanforth (Jim Broadbent) is Indiana's friend at Marshall College. The character replaces Marcus Brody following Denholm Elliott's death in 1992. Stanforth resigns to protect Indy from government agents who want him on trump Communist charges, and is later reinstated, with Indy joining him as the Associate Dean.
Mutt Williams (Shia LaBeouf), born Henry Walton Jones III, is introduced in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull as a Panhead motorcycle-riding greaser and becomes Indiana Jones's sidekick. He is the son of former bar owner Marion Ravenwood and archaeologist Indiana Jones, although Indy and Mutt are unaware of their relationship until the events of Crystal Skull.
Having never acquainted with Indiana Jones after birth, Mutt believed that his stepfather, Royal Air Force pilot Colin Williams, was his father, until he and his mother met up with Jones in 1957. Mutt goes to Peru with Indiana in search of his mother, his surrogate father Harold Oxley, and the crystal skull. Mutt has travelled extensively with his mother, and has never graduated from school – any school. (He appears to have sampled several.) Unlike many film sidekick roles, Mutt is highly intelligent, follows a strong line in deductive reasoning, and excels at fencing (which proved useful in his duel with Spalko) and other practical adventuring skills. After both Mutt and Indiana discover their relation to each other, the latter is furious that his son is a dropout and is determined to get him back to school. Mutt also resents his father as a schoolteacher despite also an adventurer and hates when referred by him as "Son", similarly to when his late-paternal grandfather referred to Indiana as "Junior". They gradually develop their relationship towards the end of the film, with Mutt accompanies his parents serving as his father's groomsman when Indiana and Marion finally marry.
Mutt has a horizontal scar across his right cheek inflicted during a duel with Irina Spalko. Mutt has stated that his prep-school education has made him "handy with a blade." The book explains Mutt was champion on the fencing team, but was kicked out of school for placing bets on his matches. Mutt's occupation prior to meeting up with Indy is that of a motorcycle mechanic.
Frank Marshall said Mutt represents a youthful arrogance, to show Indiana is older and wiser. LaBeouf was Spielberg's only choice for the role. Excited at the prospect of being in an Indiana Jones film, LaBeouf signed on without reading the script and did not know what character he would play. LaBeouf watched Blackboard Jungle, Rebel Without a Cause and The Wild One to get into his character's mindset, copying mannerisms and words from characters in those films, such as the use of a switchblade as a weapon. Authentic 1950s jackets were found for LaBeouf's costume, while The Indian Motor-Company provided his motorcycle.
George Lucas was interested in producing a spin-off about Mutt and his own adventures, with Indiana in a supporting role. However, Lucas later retracted a statement on the possibility of a spin-off series or LaBeouf taking over as the lead of the Indiana Jones series, stating "Harrison Ford is Indiana Jones, no Harrison means no Indy".
Two 3¾ inch figures of Mutt, a deluxe figure of him on his motorcycle, an Adventures Heroes figurine, and a 12-inch figure were released in 2008. Mutt is available in four Lego Indiana Jones sets based on Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.
In an early script of the movie, Williams was set to fight with Spalko in a real virgin jungle, but the idea was rejected as being too dangerous.
Harold "Ox" Oxley (John Hurt) born in Leeds, England, is a colleague of Indiana who broke off contact with him in 1937 while searching for the skulls. Both Ox and Indiana studied under Abner Ravenwood. Ox was a close friend of Ravenwood's daughter, Marion, and hence became a surrogate father for her son Mutt, following the death of Mutt's stepfather. He is also aware of Mutt's true paternity to Indiana. Ox's wits have been addled by long exposure to one of the crystal skulls. As soon as the skull is returned to Akator, Ox regains his sanity, and is last seen at Indy and Marion's wedding, clapping enthusiastically. The character was inspired by Ben Gunn from Treasure Island.
The character of Oxley was created by Frank Darabont in his script of Indiana Jones and the City of the Gods. However, in his scrapped script, Oxley's name was Vernon Oxley.
Introduced in other media
Sophia Hapgood debuted in the 1992 video game Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis and its comic book adaptation. Sophia's backstory in Fate of Atlantis explains she was born in Boston and became briefly romantically involved with Indiana while accompanying him on an expedition in Iceland. Afterwards, she becomes a psychic giving lectures on Atlantis, and accompanies Indiana on his quest to stop the Nazis harnessing the lost city's power in 1939. Sophia wears a necklace containing the Atlantean King's consciousness: although Indiana frees her from its power, an alternate ending depicts her being consumed and dying.
The Thunder in the Orient comic, set in 1938, has Sophia asked for Indiana's help securing a tablet by Buddha, which can help the reader achieve nirvana: The Empire of Japan wants it to unify Asia's 500 million Buddhists under its rule. Sophia is briefly captured by bandits in Afghanistan, before battling Japanese soldiers for the tablet on the Yangtze River and losing it. In the 1999 video game sequel Indiana Jones and the Infernal Machine, Sophia, voiced by Tasia Valenza, is a Central Intelligence Agency officer in 1947. She accompanies Jones during his search for the Babylonian Infernal Machine. In the game's finale, she is possessed by the god Marduk, but Indiana frees her.
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