I Am the Monarch of the Sea

Filed under:Movies — posted by Anwyn on April 18, 2007 @ 3:33 pm

… but apparently not even appearing in the fourth Indiana Jones movie. John Rhys-Davies, famous as Gimli in Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings, but forever Sallah in my heart, has been “written out of Indy 4 in favour of a younger cast.” Cinematical speculates that if he was “written out,” does that mean he was previously “written in?” I doubt it–I’d guess “written out” in this case means that they will mention him in passing in the script rather than ignore the fact that he once existed.

I get that, just as with the abominable last three Star Wars movies, there was the need to reach out to the younger audience, those benighted souls who’ve perhaps grown to late adolescence without even seeing Raiders. But it seems to me that one good way to do that would have been a cameo by an actor from three of the highest-grossing, most wildly popular films of all time.

Alas. Was there anything better than Sallah’s bustling anxiety to be of help, his deep sense of honor and friendship? “These are my friends. They are my family. I will hear of it, if they are not treated well.”

Also, he once shook my hand.


“That is for Fayah. And that is for your children. And this is for you.” She kisses him; he is transported. Indy and Marion take leave. As they walk away, Sallah sings.

“A British tar is a soaring soul, as free as a mountain bird …”


H/t: J.

Update: See-Dub brings to light the actor’s controversial social positions. I doubt those are popular at Skywalker Ranch or Playmountain Compound. More reasons to love Rhys-Davies.


  1. Darn shame. There’s a lot to like about him: http://www.nationalreview.com/comment/leigh200403051052.asp

    Comment by see-Dubya — April 19, 2007 @ 10:07 am

  2. “He also regularly heaps praise on President George W. Bush and his war on terror, including the invasion of Iraq. ‘There are at least four or five [officials in the Bush administration] who could hold their own against the Founding Fathers,’ [Rhys-Davies] says.”

    Okay… I’m not dishing on the Bush administration when I say that I don’t think there are many people alive today who could hold a candle to the Founding Fathers — left, right or otherwise.

    Aside from that, it’s a shame he won’t be in the new film. If they’re going for a “younger” cast, why is Ford going to star? :-)

    Comment by Allen — April 19, 2007 @ 12:28 pm

  3. Allen, I don’t know about “alive today” (or administrating today), but the Founding Fathers were still human beings and thus very open to comparisons with other historical figures. That so many of them with the proper bearing were brought together at the right time and place to exercise their considerable abilities for a particular goal says as much about the extraordinary times as about extraordinary men–and though they were extraordinary, there are extraordinary men in all eras. Paul Johnson concludes in A History of the American People that many of the men working for (and after) the end of WWII were of Founder-caliber. Also we can’t forget that aside from Washington, none of the Founders were exactly idolized in their own day. History is the great judge.

    Comment by Anwyn — April 20, 2007 @ 9:28 am

  4. I must admit to some idol worship when it comes to the Founders so, yes, given enough time we’ll have a different idea of who the great thinkers of today really were. I’m sure there will be surprises all around even though none of us will be alive to be surprised.

    Hopefully they’ll spell my name right in the history books. :-) ;-)

    Comment by Allen — April 20, 2007 @ 12:32 pm

  5. It’s a bit of a shame that he won’t be in the fourth movie, but that’s no guarantee it will be a bad movie. Maybe Jones Elder & Younger will not have to go to the Middle East? (Probably just as well, since Muslim Arabs in movies 1 & 3 were used as Nazi thugs. I could just hear the whining from CAIR about a role reprise already….) I am sure John Rhys-Davies will get some more memorable roles in the years to come. He’s too good to ignore.

    Comment by fallohide — April 24, 2007 @ 4:37 pm

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