20 Things You Didn't Know About Raiders Of The Lost Ark

Looking at everyone's whip-cracking fedora-wearing archeologist.

Raiders Of The Lost Ark
Paramount Pictures

Inspired by the adventurous serials of the early 20th century, George Lucas and Steven Spielberg created Raiders of the Lost Ark; a perfect blend of action and adventure and one of the defining films of the 1980s. Countless movies have attempted to replicate Raiders' style but none of them have been able to match it. After 40 years, the first entry in the Indiana Jones franchise is still the best in the series as well as one of the greatest action films of all time.

The film has been picked apart by avid fans so many times, cinephiles are familiar with the ins-and-outs of how Raiders was made. You probably know about the R2-D2 Easter egg. It's common knowledge that Harrison Ford wasn't the first choice for the role.

But throughout this list, we will be looking at lesser-known facts, abandoned storylines, and changes in characters. Why is Indy's hat so important? Who inspired the main character? How differently could the film have turned out?

Read on to learn the secrets behind one of the most celebrated films in history.

20. The Real Reason Indiana Jones Was Made

Raiders Of The Lost Ark

In May 1977, George Lucas, released a little film called Star Wars. Lucas was so certain it would bomb, he immediately asked his friend, Steven Spielberg, to go on vacation to Hawaii so they could brainstorm a new project.

When Lucas said he was working on an adventure story which played homage to the classic 1940 swashbuckling serials, Spielberg realised this was the perfect opportunity to create a character just as cool as James Bond. Spielberg adored Ian Fleming's work and desperately wanted to make a Bond film but was constantly rejected. He saw Lucas' idea as a way to make a character that was cooler than Bond

Within four years, their creation, Raiders of the Lost Ark, was released, launching one of the most beloved films series ever. Ironically, James Bond actor, Sean Connery, went on to play Indy's father in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, (which was probably done out of spite).

So there you go. Indiana Jones was created so Spielberg could spite a studio and because George Lucas thought Star Wars (also known as the most famous film ever) would tank at the box office.


James Egan has written 80 books including 1000 Facts about Superheroes Vol. 1-3 1000 Facts about Horror Movies Vol. 1-3 1000 Facts about The Greatest Films Ever Made Vol. 1-3 1000 Facts about Video Games Vol. 1-3 1000 Facts about TV Shows Vol. 1-3 Twitter - @jameswzegan85