Casting Call

Robert Pattinson as Indiana Jones? Here Are Our Picks to Fill Harrison Ford’s Fedora

Star Wars isn’t the only celebrated franchise getting the Disney reboot treatment. With rumors that the Twilight star is being eyed to don the hat and whip, it begs the question: who should play everyone’s favorite adventurer-archaeologist?

06.07.14 3:07 AM ET

“…Indiana Jones. I always knew someday you’d come walking back through my door. I never doubted that. Something made it inevitable.”

It’s been six years since the Shia LaBeouf-filled calamity that was Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. In the years since, Cate Blanchett avoided Woodygate on her way to a Best Actress Oscar, The Beef has become a meta-plagiarist/self-flagellating performance artist, and Harrison Ford has swapped his hat and whip for a vest and DL-44 heavy blaster pistol for his turn in J.J. Abrams’ highly anticipated Star Wars: Episode VII.

But news of the revamped Star Wars franchise, which will star the original cast as well as the likes of John Boyega, Adam Driver, Lupita Nyong’o, and others, has snowballed into speculation regarding Disney’s other massive Lucasfilm property: Indiana Jones.

Back in Dec. 2013, Walt Disney Co. struck a deal with Paramount Pictures to acquire marketing and distribution rights to all future Indiana Jones films. The move came in the wake of Disney acquiring Lucasfilm, which produced all four Indy films, back in 2012.

While Disney has not officially announced their plans for a fifth Indiana Jones film, it’s no doubt in the works. All four Steven Spielberg-directed films have grossed a combined $1.9 billion at the global box office. And earlier this week, a dubious rumor began circulating that Robert Pattinson, the British Twilight heartthrob, was the studio’s top choice for Indy.

The rumor, however, does beg the question: since Ford is turning 72 next month, and Heath Ledger, who would have been perfect, has sadly passed, who should play Indiana Jones?

Robert Pattinson

Cast member Robert Pattinson poses during a photocall for the film "Maps to the Stars" in competition at the 67th Cannes Film Festival in Cannes May 19, 2014.              REUTERS/Yves Herman (FRANCE  - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT HEADSHOT)   - RTR3PTQZ

Yves Herman/Reuters

The 28-year-old Brit has, according to the aforementioned dubious rumor, risen to the top of the list—or at least the rumor mill—to play the snake-fearing archaeologist. And, while Pattinson has shown promise playing icy, detached characters, like his Mephistophelean trader in Cosmopolis, he seems to lack the requisite charisma, machismo, and snarky sense of humor to play the quippy Dr. Jones. Can you picture Pattinson saying, “It’s not the years, honey. It’s the mileage?” And can he grow scruff? Probably not the right choice.

Bradley Cooper

Bradley Cooper arrives at the British Academy of Film and Arts (BAFTA) awards ceremony at the Royal Opera House in London February 16, 2014. REUTERS/Luke MacGregor (BRITAIN - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT HEADSHOT) - RTX18YK4

Luke MacGregor/Reuters

Back in March, the news-breaking blog Latino Review claimed that Bradley Cooper, the Oscar nominated star of Silver Linings Playbook and the Hangover films, was at the top of the studio’s wish list to play Indiana. And you know what? Cooper’s a pretty good choice. He’s the exact same age—39—that Ford was when he first played Indiana, isn’t tied down to a franchise (now that the Hangover flicks are thankfully in his rearview), and can play funny (Wedding Crashers), wildly unpredictable (Silver Linings), and the adventure-seeking alpha male (The Hangover).

Josh Brolin

Cast member Josh Brolin arrives for the "Labor Day" film screening at the 38th Toronto International Film Festival in Toronto, September 7, 2013. REUTERS/Mark Blinch (CANADA - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT) - RTX13C6S

Mark Blinch/Reuters

This would be a fun full-circle moment, wouldn’t it? (See: The Goonies) Brolin’s got the machismo factor down pat, and you could definitely picture him in the outfit, but he may lack the requisite finesse with the ladies, and his smile is, well, a bit sinister. Plus, his remake history is a mixed bag, with the solid True Grit and the atrocious Oldboy. He’s also not the most available guy on the planet, considering he just got cast as the supervillain Thanos in Guardians of the Galaxy and Avengers: Age of Ultron, although that does mean he’s part of the Disney family now.

Michael Fassbender

Actor Michael Fassbender arrives for the film screening of "12 Years a Slave" at the 38th Toronto International Film Festival in Toronto, September 6, 2013.  REUTERS/Mark Blinch (CANADA - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT HEADSHOT) - RTX13AOF

Mark Blinch/Reuters

Too scary… and teethy. Plus, whenever he’s pictured in a hat and frayed cotton shirt it’ll conjure up images of his sadistic, Bible-thumpin’ slave owner in 12 Years A Slave. Also, between the X-Men films and his upcoming potential franchise, an adaptation of the video game Assassin’s Creed, FassyB’s schedule is pretty packed.

Jake Gyllenhaal

Actor Jake Gyllenhaal poses at the 17th Annual Hollywood Film Awards Gala at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California October 21, 2013. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni  (UNITED STATES - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT) - RTX14JC0

Mario Anzuoni/Reuters

The last time Gyllenhaal took a trip out to the desert, this happened. Pass.

Chiwetel Ejiofor

Actor Chiwetel Ejiofor attends the BAFTA Los Angeles Britannia Awards in Beverly Hills, California  November 9, 2013. REUTERS/Phil McCarten (UNITED STATES - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT) - RTX157FZ

Phil McCarten/Reuters

Love this idea. Ejiofor can kick some ass (Children of Men) and has one of those great broad smiles. Plus, did you see 12 Years A Slave? This guy can act. Similar to Michael B. Jordan’s turn as the Human Torch in the upcoming Fantastic Four reboot, there’s no reason why a black fella can’t step into the shoes of Indy for a new generation of fans. Can you imagine Ejiofor as Indy and, say… Morgan Freeman as Henry Jones, Sr.? That would be a lot of fun.

Ryan Gosling

Director Ryan Gosling poses during a photocall for the film "Lost River" in competition for the category "Un Certain Regard" at the 67th Cannes Film Festival in Cannes May 20, 2014.       REUTERS/Yves Herman (FRANCE  - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT HEADSHOT)   - RTR3Q0N0

Yves Herman/Reuters

The Oscar nominated indie (and Internet) heartthrob has recently taken to playing strong, very silent types—he had just 17 lines in Only God Forgives—has altogether shied away from big blockbuster franchises, and he gained a ton of weight and then was subsequently fired from his last big budget studio flick, The Lovely Bones. Sure, he looks damn good in a fedora (see: The Gangster Squad), but combining Indy with Gosling’s signature faux-Brooklyn accent doesn’t exactly scream “casting coup.”

Hugh Jackman

Cast member Hugh Jackman attends the premiere of his film "Prisoners" at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in Beverly Hills, California September 12, 2013. The movie opens in the U.S. on September 20. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni (UNITED STATES - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT) - RTX13JIR

Mario Anzuoni/Reuters

Jackman is insanely ripped for any guy, let alone a 45-year-old, and is probably too swoll to play an archaeologist; he’d be the most diesel archaeologist ever. When I picture Jackman in fedora-wearing adventurer mode, it reminds me of his turn in the Baz Luhrmann bomb Australia. Also, the Aussie is thought of as Wolverine, so to have him play another iconic hero might be a bit much for both audiences and the studio, if they want to reboot fresh.

Idris Elba

Cast member Idris Elba, who portrays Nelson Mandela in the film, arrives for the Royal Premiere of "Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom" in London December 5, 2013. South African anti-apartheid hero Mandela died aged 95 at his Johannesburg home on Thursday after a prolonged lung infection, plunging his nation and the world into mourning for a man hailed by global leaders as a moral giant.   REUTERS/Suzanne Plunkett (BRITAIN - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT POLITICS OBITUARY) - RTX165P4

Suzanne Plunkett/Reuters

Although we’d rather see him play 007, a thousand times yes. Elba’s also, like Jackman, a bit too bulky to play Dr. Jones, but if he dropped a bit of weight he’d be a fun choice. He’s got the magnetic charisma, winning smile, and quip factor (see: RocknRolla) to play Indy, and the role would finally give the underappreciated Elba the big Hollywood blockbuster vehicle he’s long deserved.

Nathan Fillion

Actor Nathan Fillion, of the series "Castle," arrives at the 2013 People's Choice Awards in Los Angeles, January 9, 2013.   REUTERS/Danny Moloshok (UNITED STATES  - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT) (PEOPLESCHOICE - ARRIVALS)   - RTR3C9FB

Danny Moloshok/Reuters

Ten years ago, I would have loved this. But these days, as brilliant as his recent portrayal of Dogberry was in Joss Whedon’s Much Ado About Nothing, as well as his turn on Serenity, Fillion is looking a bit too paunchy for the part. But seriously, ten years ago he would have been great.

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Who do you think should play Indy?