Tom Selleck Indiana Jones
John Griffiths/Flickr/Creative Commons/Casey Florig/Flickr/Wikimedia Commons

Indiana Jones is one of the most iconic characters in movie history, and he was played by Harrison Ford.

However, the Magnum P.I. star Tom Selleck has revealed that the movie series’ famed director Steven Spielberg wanted to cast him in the role originally.

Selleck also ended up playing another Indiana Jones-like role later on.

Selleck got into some of this while promoting his book, “You Never Know: A Memoir.”

‘Quigley Down Under’

Selleck said in an interview with CBS Sunday Morning that he had a hard time finding a footing in Hollywood in the beginning. He said he taped six pilots before finally getting the Magnum P.I. role.

After the success of that show, Selleck claims he was offered the lead role in the 1981 picture, Indiana Jones: Raiders of the Lost Ark by Spielberg, himself. Check out Selleck’s Indiana Jones screen test in the video below.

According to Selleck, “Steven [Spielberg] said, ‘Here’s the script. Go read it. Tell me if you like it. Cause we want you for ‘Indiana Jones.”

“So I got to about page 8 in Steven’s office and I just went ‘Oh, this is really good,'” he added.

Selleck went on to say that he was ultimately forced to turn down the Jones role due to his commitments with Magnum P.I. Watch his full comments on this in the video below.

Related: Harrison Ford ‘Hates’ That Tom Selleck

But after Magnum P.I. ended in 1988, Selleck ended up picking up a similar role.

And Harrison Ford even played a part in that journey as well.

Selleck portrayed American cowboy in Australia, Matthew Quigley, in the 1990 film Quigley Down Under.

This movie had been kicked around for some time. Originally it was a vehicle for Steve McQueen, who became ill so the project was put on the backburner.

Ford was approached but said no due to it being too much like Indiana Jones. In 1985, Selleck was offered the role but turned it down for the same reason he couldn’t do Indiana Jones – Magnum P.I.

But after that series ended in 1988, it happened, and Selleck was able to take the role. Check out the original trailer for Quigley Down Under in the video below.

Related: Harrison Ford Responds After His ‘Indiana Jones’ Co-Star Ke Huy Quan Is Nominated For An Academy Award

Ford’s Indiana Jones is so iconic that it’s nearly impossible to imagine anyone else to the role. If anyone else could have done it, however, it would be Tom Selleck. It would certainly have been interesting to find out what Selleck’s version of Indiana Jones would look like.

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