Steven Spielberg hands Indiana Jones 5 to director James Mangold

Director Steven Spielberg has cracked the whip on the classic Indiana Jones franchise since its inception back in 1981. But when it comes to Indiana Jones 5, the revered filmmaker will be stepping aside in favour of Logan and Le Mans '66 helmer James Mangold.

Deadline reports that James Mangold is in talks to direct Harrison Ford in Indiana Jones 5, marking the first time that Spielberg has handed over the reins. Mangold recently scored a critical hit with racing drama Le Mans '66, which was Oscar-nominated for Best Picture, and brought bloodthirsty credibility to Hugh Jackman's final Wolverine movie Logan.

In 1981's Raiders of the Lost Ark, Spielberg and Ford first unleashed fedora-sporting hero Indiana Jones upon the world. It swiftly became one of the most popular adventure movies of all time, spawning three sequels: 1984's The Temple of Doom, 1989's The Last Crusade and 2008's The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, all of which were massive box office successes.

At the not-so-tender age of 77, Ford is preparing to step into Indy's dust boots for another (presumably final) time. The character (developed by Spielberg and friend George Lucas) has battled Nazis, evil Thuggee cults and sinister Soviets, so goodness knows what the nature of the next threat will be.

"When we have an opportunity to make another, it is because people have enjoyed them," Ford said. "I feel obliged to make sure our ambitions are as ambitious as they were when we started."

Indiana Jones 5 is tentatively pencilled in for a summer 2021 release date. Stay tuned to the Cineworld blog for more details as they emerge.

In the meantime, Spielberg will be presenting his remake of classic musical West Side Story, starring Ansel Elgort and due for release in December 2020.