In 1957, disguised with his comrades as US military soldiers, "Franklin" aided Colonel Antonin Dovchenko and Colonel Doctor Irina Spalko in infiltrating Hangar 51 in Nevada, USA as part of a covert Soviet invasion of America to acquire the Roswell remains.
Franklin accompanied his superiors to Hangar 51 in the driver seat of a staff car in the boot of which American archaeologist Indiana Jones and double agent George "Mac" McHale were held. On the way there, he was goaded into a race with teenager Jimmy Keegan despite the objections of his passenger, Roosevelt. Once they arrived at Hangar 51, Sergeant Wycroft and his MPs approached the convoy, informing them that the base they were entering was closed due to weapons testing. Franklin and Roosevelt remained inside their car as several other soldiers executed the guards, and then led the group into the hangar itself.
Indiana Jones and Mac were released under Dovchenko's orders, and were surrounded by the Soviets as Jones retrieved his fedora. It was Franklin and another soldier who dragged Jones and Mac from the boot of the car and dumped them on the ground. After Jones was coerced into finding the crate holding the Roswell crash victim, he lead the group into the hangar, where they awaited further instructions from their captive. When Jones asked Colonel Dovchenko for bullets, the Colonel translated this to his subordinates and they all laughed at Indy. However, the archaeologist was able to convince Dovchenko to give him several bullets, which he then used to locate the highly magnetized crate in which the Roswell remains were kept.
The Soviets looked on in awe as Spalko opened the crate, showing them all the corpse of a deceased being from another world. However, Jones used the distraction of the inhuman body to disable the Soviet guarding him and steal a machine gun from both the latter and then Franklin using his whip for himself and Mac. The two threatened Spalko, but after Mac revealed his loyalty was to the Russians, Indy realized he was outnumbered. Dovchenko ordered him to drop his gun, but when Jones did the machine gun fired and the bullet hit a Soviet in the foot, allowing Jones time to climb a wall of crates and make his escape, despite the efforts of several soldiers to kill him. Franklin was among the Soviets who pursued Jones after he hijacked a jeep, and was ordered by Spalko to block the exits of the hangar so that Indy would not make it out alive. However, Jones got away through an underground chamber on board a rocket sled.
With Lincoln and Hoover, Franklin tracked Jones to Doom Town, unaware that the settlement was actually a nuclear testing site. When they heard the air raid siren, Lincoln yelled for the others to come and the soldiers promptly piled into their staff car to escape. However, as they drove away from the exploding town, the nuclear shockwave engulfed them, killing all three men, though not before they spotted a refrigerator flying over them carrying Indiana Jones safely away from blast.
Personality and traits
Like his companions, Franklin was a soldier determined to serve the Soviet Special Forces and his nation. However, he also displayed a playful side as he took on the racing challenge set by some American teenagers despite his passenger's disapproval.
Behind the scenes
Franklin was played uncredited by stuntman Jon Braver in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Like many of the Soviet Special Forces who infiltrated Hangar 51, Franklin shares his name with a US president, in his case Franklin Delano Roosevelt.
The scene in Crystal Skull where Indiana Jones disarms Franklin originally included a gag in which Jones uses his whip to make Franklin shoot another soldier before taking his gun. While it was cut from the final edit of the film, this moment is retained in the film's novelization, comic book adaptation and junior novel. Rehearsal footage for the scene was included in the featurette Production Diary: Making of "The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull".
According to his insignia, "Franklin" was pretending to be a corporal in the US Army.
- Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull novel (First appearance)
- Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
- Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull comic
- Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull junior novel