Producer Mace Neufeld Talks Next Jack Ryan Film Starring Chris Pine

     December 4, 2009

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Producer Mace Neufeld, who has been with the Jack Ryan series since The Hunt for Red October, provided an update on the status of the next entry in the franchise to Steve who is at the press junket today for the upcoming Clint Eastwood film Invictus starring Matt Damon.  Set to Star Chris Pine as the 4th Mr. Ryan (following Alec Baldwin, Harrison Ford, and Ben Affleck), Neufeld said that while the story will skew young for Pine, it will not be an origin story.

According to Neufeld, the story picks up with Ryan on Wall Street (the home of all great heroes!) although he didn’t elaborate beyond that point.  Neufeld did point out that what separates the Jack Ryan franchise from most others is that “they’re kind of thinking man’s thrillers,” and Ryan’s skills is in seeing ahead three steps to reach conclusions before everybody else.  Hopefully that will translate into an exciting film and will show others (*cough*Da Vinci Code and Angels & Demons*cough*) how it’s done.

Check out the full transcript after the jump.

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During the press conference Mace Neufeld was asked:

How are things going developing the second reboot of that character and what books might you be looking at?

MACE NEUFELD: No, it’s an original screenplay and we’ll be getting a rewrite on it January 3rd.  Making a film, as you know,  is a very long process, so I don’t know when we’re going to do this one.

After the press conference ended, a number people went up to him to try and get more info.  Here’s what he said:

MACE NEUFELD: We ran out of books… RED RABBIT was the last one and we just couldn’t seem to get a script out of that one. Paramount wanted to restart the franchise. We had done that once before with Ben Affleck but they didn’t make a film right after that because Ben got involved with some other film that didn’t do well. Things quited down. The new management came into Paramount and they said, ‘This is a really valuable franchise. Let’s try to restart it with a younger actor.’ The Chris Pine idea came up and hopefully that’s what we’ll be doing.

Do you have a writer?

NEUFELD: Adam Koxac. And Hasan Amini did one draft. Adam is now working on another.

Do you have a title?

NEUFELD: No title. ‘Untitled Jack Ryan Movie’.

Do you have to redo how he got his start and everything?

NEUFELD: No, no. We pick him up when he’s on Wall Street. But I’m not going to tell you the rest of the story.

I’m curious, when you’re writing this and talking to a screenwriter, are you writing it with a budget in mind or do you tell them to just go and that you’ll fit the budget to that?

NEUFELD: Write what you want and then we’ll fight with the studio… It all starts with the writer. It really does.  The Jack Ryan movies have never been action films. They’re kind of ‘thinking man’s thrillers’. Jack is refered to as a water-walker because of his ability to jump ahead to a conclusion. That’s very big in all the Jack Ryan films and that’s why we want to portray him. He’s a teacher, he’s a historian. He’s a linguist and he’s really smart.

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