He may not be the fan favorite to direct, but 'Bourne' trilogy screenwriter Tony Gilroy (who garnered just 19% of your vote versus Doug Liman's 57% in our poll last December) is signed on to helm the next installment of the franchise, titled 'The Bourne Legacy.' We learned this to be official early this month. What hadn't been clarified, though, is that contrary to rumors this fourth film will not be a reboot, or even a prequel recast with a younger actor. Rather Gilroy tells Hollywood Elsewhere that 'Legacy' will be a continuation and part of the same chronology. However, neither Matt Damon nor his character, Jason Bourne, will be anywhere near it.
This should be confusing to readers of the Eric Van Lustbader novel of the same name, which focuses on Bourne's life post-'Bourne Ultimatum.' But the film will not be based on that book. It will tell the story of another character in the same universe, "a whole new hero" in a "stand-alone project," as the Oscar-nominated writer-director explains it. His further clarification:
"The easiest way to think of it is an expansion or a reveal," Gilroy tells Hollywood Elsewhere. "Jason Bourne will not be in this film, but he's very much alive. What happened in the first three films is the trigger for what happens. I'm building a legend and an environment and a wider conspiracy...the world we're making enhances and advances and invites Jason Bourne's return [down the road]."
The most interesting thing Gilroy has to say about this is that fans of the past three films "will be rewarded for paying attention." So there may be Easter eggs of a sort? Or maybe returning characters or mention of characters? He doesn't state whether or not any past roles will be reprised for 'Legacy,' no certainty that at least Landy (Joan Allen) will return, and unfortunately no hint that now we'll get to see Nicky (Julia Stiles) on her own missions as an unexpected killing machine.
So now it's time to speculate as to how exactly this spin-off sideways progression will commence and how Bourne might return later (Damon and director Paul Greengrass are interested in possibly coming back some day), presumably to team up with this new hero. What characters would you like to see brought back, if any will be allowed to?