Actor/writer Matt Damon and director Paul Greengrass are reuniting for a new Bourne movie. The anticipated sequel is due out in theaters Summer 2016, which is why the project is currently filling out its supporting cast. Ex Machina standout Alicia Vikander has already joined in an undisclosed part, while Julia Stiles is on board to reprise her role as CIA agent Nicky Parsons from the previous Bourne films.
Viggo Mortensen was reportedly offered the villain role in the film, but there's been no word on his involvement to date. The latest Bourne 5 casting update reveals that the project has gained another respectable addition, in the form of Oscar-winner Tommy Lee Jones.
Variety broke the story, with their sources saying that the role is most likely that of a superior officer at the CIA. The report likens the part to the ones portrayed by Chris Cooper, Brian Cox, and David Strathairn in previous Bourne installments, indicating that Jones' character will be the one leading the hunt for Damon's Jason Bourne. However, no official plot details have been revealed at this juncture.
It appears safe to assume that Jones signing on for Bourne 5 does not take Mortensen out of the running. It was reported that the Lord of the Rings actor was being looked at to play an assassin that tracks Bourne down, meaning there's a good chance it's an entirely different character from the one Jones will bring to life. That's good news for the fans still holding out hope that Mortensen will lend his considerable talents to this action franchise.
Jones coming on board for Bourne 5 presents a number of exciting possibilities. Throughout his career, he has displayed a wide acting range, jumping seamlessly between comedy and drama. Given the tone of the Bourne franchise, Jones' character here may recall his no-nonsense U.S. Marshall Sam Gerrard from The Fugitive (an acclaimed turn that earned Jones an Oscar); the actor is more than capable of playing that type of character convincingly. As such, it's hard to envision a scenario in which Jones is not able to continue the series tradition of memorable CIA officers. From Alex Conklin to Noah Vosen, they were always interesting to watch as they plotted against our hero.
2015 has been a very lucrative year for Universal, and by all accounts the new Bourne film should be able to continue their hot streak when it hits theaters. Fans have long expressed a desire for Damon to come back for another go-around, and the actor maintained from the start he wouldn't return unless the story was up to par. Clearly, something about the pitch caught his attention, as he's even co-writing the script with Greengrass and Christopher Rouse (Greengrass' longtime editor).
There are lots of franchises that will be looking to recapture their glory days in the next few years. The way things are going, Bourne 5 could very well be one of the best of the bunch.
Bourne 5 (not the official title) will open in U.S. theaters on July 29th, 2016.