As with any summer blockbuster in the modern age, the flashy merchandising is a huge part of the experience. The “Indiana Jones” saga is no stranger to shameless tie-ins, but this is the first time Indy is feeling the heat from all sides, making pop culture ubiquity a must.
This month brings the first wave of Lego sets themed to the trilogy’s finest moments to toy store shelves. In May, more sets will find release with scenes from “Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.” Of course, early peeks have floated up online. While I’m not too concerned with spoilers, others might be.
Ok, so it isn’t a trailer. Now word comes that a teaser won’t see the inside of a cinema (or the early peek of YouTube-happy camera phone) until February because, and this is just a theory, Steven Spielberg hates us all. Ahh, what can you do. With Christopher Nolan’s raging "Dark Knight" glimpse, a "Narnia" sequel peek, and the Wachowskis’ brain-freeze "Speed Racer" trailer in theaters, it would be a hard event to top. Maybe Spielberg is right to hold off just a bit longer.
So, for the holiday movie rush, a teaser poster for “Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” has been issued to goose the fanboys and stun the Diet Coke-sucking unaware. There’s an uncomfortable history of iffy Indiana Jones teaser artwork to pore over, with “Temple of Doom” handed something resembling a discarded Warhol idea and “Last Crusade” saddled with that awful “The Man with the Hat is Back” tagline. Yuck.
With one-sheet wizard Drew Struzan designing the poster (he’s an Indy vet), “Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” wisely keeps a strapping Harrison Ford at the forefront, as if to say, “Yep, he’s 65 years-old. Suck it.”
Overall, the poster bears a striking resemblance to a "Temple of Doom" design (one that happens to be a personal favorite), mashing up certain terror with an unbeatable heroic pose. It’s fantastic to see this sort of feeling reinstated for the new picture.
It seems extra bonus points will be awarded to anyone who can figure out the alien-like image settled between the eyes of the crystal skull. It’s known that Lucas and Spielberg are taking cues from 1950’s sci-fi cinema for the sequel, but will they go all the way to extraterrestrial realms?
No doubt, this poster is a treat and officially kicks off the excitement factor the last year was only hinting at.
This TWC/MGM flick has been gathering dust on the shelf for two years now, with no signs of release. When you look at this poster, keep in mind the film is set in the 1300s and, while bawdy, is not an “American Pie” sequel.