This month's issue of Empire magazine (theDecember issue, fact fans, featuring Mission: Impossible on the cover) contains part two of our Steven Spielberg special, following last month's in-depth look at The Adventures Of Tintin: The Secret Of The Unicorn. This time, we largely focused on War Horse, but we did find time to ask about the much-rumoured** Jurassic Park IV** and Indiana Jones V.
On his dinosaur series, the signs are good. "The screenplay is being written right now by Mark Protosevich. I'm hoping that will come out in the next couple of years. We have a good story. We have a better story for four than we had for three..."
Since the third instalment wasn't that shabby as story goes, that's got to be a good thing, right? But what of Indiana Jones? We asked Spielberg about his reaction to the critiques of Kingdom of the Crystal Skull as well as his future plans for the archaeologist. Where do things stand right now?
"You have to ask George Lucas. George is in charge of breaking the stories. He's done it on all four movies. Whether I like the stories or not, George has broken all the stories. He is working on Indy V. We haven't gone to screenplay yet, but he's working on the story. I'll leave it to George to come up with a good story."
And Crystal Skull? "I'm very happy with the movie. I always have been... I sympathise with people who didn't like the MacGuffin because I never liked the MacGuffin. George and I had big arguments about the MacGuffin. I didn't want these things to be either aliens or inter-dimensional beings. But I am loyal to my best friend. When he writes a story he believes in - even if I don't believe in it - I'm going to shoot the movie the way George envisaged it. I'll add my own touches, I'll bring my own cast in, I'll shoot the way I want to shoot it, but I will always defer to George as the storyteller of the Indy series. I will never fight him on that."
And on the specifics of the criticisms, Spielberg takes some of them as a badge of pride. "The gopher was good. I have the stand-in one at home. What people really jumped at was Indy climbing into a refrigerator and getting blown into the sky by an atom-bomb blast. Blame me. Don't blame George. That was my silly idea. People stopped saying "jump the shark". They now say, "nuked the fridge". I'm proud of that. I'm glad I was able to bring that into popular culture."
The Adventures Of Tintin: The Secret Of The Unicorn is out now, and War Horse will follow on January 13 in the UK. Pick up the new Empire for the full story from Spielberg on the making of that war opus.