INDIANA JONES AND THE KINGDOM OF THE CRYSTAL SKULL has proved a huge hit at the Cannes International Film Festival on Sunday (18May08) - receiving a standing ovation from critics at its world premiere.
The fourth installment of Steven Spielberg and George Lucas' famous adventure franchise was one of the most eagerly awaited screenings at the French event, attracting a huge amount of hype and publicity.
But weeks of speculation threatened to tarnish the premiere after rumours suggested the film had been panned by movie bosses at an exclusive initial screening in Los Angeles last month (Apr08).
However, the film - which sees 65-year-old Harrison Ford return to the role of Indiana Jones after a 19 year gap - was praised by the world's media, reportedly garnering a three and a half minute standing ovation by the select few who were invited to watch it, according to American industry publication Variety.
Before the screening, manic crowds gathered to catch a glimpse of the movie's returning star Ford, who told awaiting reporters he didn't care if the movie received bad reviews, as long as moviegoers enjoyed the action.
He said, "I expect to have the whip turned on me. I'm not really worried about it. I work for the people who pay to get in. They are my customers and my focus is on providing the best experience I can for those people."
And although legendary moviemaker Lucas admitted last month (Apr08) he had hatched plans to revive the action hero for a fifth film, he kept tight-lipped about the plans at the Cannes premiere.
He told reporters, ""Harrison, Steven and I haven't talked about it. We can't do it unless I can come up with a good idea, which I haven't."
The original trilogy - the last being 1989's Indiana Jones And The Last Crusade - was one of the highest-earning franchises in film history, grossing over $1 billion (GBP500 million) at the global box office.