The Who2 Blog

Karen Allen: Only a Cameo?

Perhaps we spoke too soon about the delights of having Karen Allen return to star opposite Harrison Ford in the upcoming Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.

We’ve been in touch with a friend in Allen’s adopted hometown of Great Barrington, Massachusetts. She writes: “Everyone is very excited about Karen’s cameo in the new Jones flick. Critics having been preemptively hailing it as the best Jones film ever. I’m suspicious of this acclaim though Harrison Ford is as much a stallion as ever.”

Only a cameo? Alas. (And is Ford really “as much a stallion as ever”?)

While we’re obsessing about Karen Allen, perhaps we can clear up another matter about her Indiana Jones history. We had heard in the past that she and Spielberg didn’t get along while filming Raiders (although we find only hints of that opinion online now). And we had assumed that was the reason why Allen didn’t appear in the sequels.

But then we ran across this 1984 GQ article, in which Allen herself says: “They told me in the beginning the stories were really about Indiana Jones, that the woman’s role would change. Well, I’m not wild about the idea of sequels anyway.”

Was she just being polite? Who knows. But we’ll take her word for it.

(Incidentally, the page where that article is reprinted — the ACME Karen Allen Page — has a bunch of terrific articles in the archives. It’s a great, low-key fan site.)

And one more aside: The website Indy-net ran a wonderful feature in 2003, The Story Behind Raiders of the Lost Ark, recounting how Tom Selleck almost played Jones, Philip Kaufman almost directed, Danny DeVito almost played the sidekick Sallah… and how Stanley Kubrick‘s daughter managed to ruin a day’s filming in London by insisting that snakes were being mistreated.

And that should be just about enough about Karen Allen for now.

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