Opening tomorrow is writer/director Tony Gilroy’s The Bourne Legacy. For those unfamiliar with the franchise reboot, this time around, a government task force led by Edward Norton‘s character is assassinating all their genetically-modified assets to prevent another Bourne situation. However, one member of the program, Aaron Cross (Jeremy Renner), manages to escape with a scientist (Rachel Weisz), and the two go on the run for their lives. The film also stars Oscar Isaac, Joan Allen, David Strathairn, Albert Finney, Stacy Keach, Scott Glenn, Corey Stoll, and Donna Murphy. For more on the film, here are five clips.
During the recent Los Angeles press day, I did an exclusive interview with producer Patrick Crowley. If you’re a fan of the Bourne films and want to hear some great behind the scenes stories about all four movies, you’re in the right place. During our extended conversation we talked about the making of Bourne Legacy, did they ever consider 3D, Easter Eggs, test screenings, will future Bourne movies have Bourne in the title, coming up with new and exciting action scenes, deleted scenes, reshoots, and so much more. Hit the jump for what he had to say.
The works of Robert Ludlum, when turned into movies, have grossed $945 million for Universal. And that’s just the three Bourne movies. The studio is adding to the Bourne legacy in 2012 with The Bourne Legacy, but Ludlum authored a couple dozen potentially profitable stories before his death in 2001. Universal is ready to try another flavor of Ludlum, The Janson Directive. The story centers on Paul Janson, a former government agent who takes on the job of rescuing a billionaire philanthropist. The mission goes awry, and Janson finds himself marked for death on the wrong end of a “beyond salvage” order from the highest level of government. Sounds a bit like Burn Notice to me, but with more of a cat-and-mouse element since Janson is being pursued by “a young agent of astonishing ability who can anticipate and counter his every move.” Actually, given the man-against-government premise and the familiar cadence of that title, this sounds like Bourne Notice. Not a complaining: depending on casting, that’s a solid hook for a thriller.
John Hlavin (The Shield) will adapt the screenplay. Ben Smith and Jeffrey Weiner are producing through Captivate. Read the synopsis for The Janson Directive after the jump.
This weekend was the big press junket for Summit Entertainment’s Red (click here for a review…it’s a lot of fun). While I’ll have tons of video interviews with the cast very soon, after the press conference ended with director Robert Schwentke, I managed to ask him a number of questions about the two projects he’s linked to – R.I.P.D. with Ryan Reynolds and a remake of Robert Ludlum’s The Osterman Weekend (previously made by Sam Peckinpah in 1983 with Rutger Hauer).
While many assumed R.I.P.D. would definitely be his next project, Schwentke revealed he also signed to direct Ludlum’s The Osterman Weekend for Summit Entertainment. However, neither movie has a ready to shoot script, as Schwentke told me they’re still waiting on the script for The Osterman Weekend and R.I.P.D. is being re-written right now. What this probably means is Schwentke is hedging his bets and whichever script gets the green light will be the one he moves forward on. It’s the reason why directors sign on to five things at the same time, as no matter how big you are in Hollywood, getting a green light is still hard.
Hit the jump for more info on both projects and to read/listen to what Schwentke had to say.
Director Frank Marshall (Eight Below) has taken the helm of Covert One, which is the next potential Robert Ludlum movie franchise. Ludlum was the author responsible for the Bourne books and while those movies have now stalled, Covert One is like a team of Jason Bournes working together. Says Pajiba, “[the books] featured a team of political and technical experts belonging to a top-secret U.S. Agency called Covert One, who fight corruption and conspiracy at the highest and most dangerous levels of society.” The first novel in the series, Covert One: Hades Factor, was adapted into a TV movie starring Stephen Dorff and Mira Sorvino back in 2006.
Due in part to the success of the Bourne films, the other works of Ludlum (who died in 2001) have become hot commodities. Also in development are The Chancellor Manuscript directed by Marc Forster (Quantum of Solace), The Matarese Circle, and Universal’s got The Sigma Protocol and The Parsifal Mosaic.
Variety reports that director Marc Forster (Quantum of Solace) has signed on to helm an adaptation of the Robert Ludlum thriller The Chancellor Manuscript. The book, which Peter O’Brien will adapt, centers on Peter Chancellor (wordplay!) who turns in a manuscript (ah, now it’s coming together) about powerful Washington D.C. folks who are blackmailed into altering U.S. policies. That is so wrong. Only organizations and companies with ungodly sums of money should be able to do that.
Paramount paid $4 million for the rights back in 2005 and that makes a lot of sense when you consider that Ludlum’s novels were the inspiration for the highly successful Bourne franchise (even though the books have eventually became a source for the titles as the plot of The Bourne Ultimatum film bears almost no resemblance to the book). Other Ludlum thrillers in the pipeline include The Sigma Protocol, which Universal is developing, and The Matarese Circle, which has David Cronenberg attached to direct, and Denzel Washington and Tom Cruise attached to star.
Forster has received some acclaim in the past for his films Finding Neverland and The Kite Runner, but the guy has never really impressed beyond some slightly clever touches to Stranger Than Fiction. Quantum just informed me that the guy is not to be trusted with action movies. That movie has four chase scenes and they’re all incredibly dull. Hopefully, he’ll change my opinion with this new movie.