With all the recent talk of Jeremy Renner playing Hawkeye in The Avengers, it’s easy to forget that he'll be playing Jason Bourne's replacement just three months later in The Bourne Legacy. Including Mission Impossible 4, that's three secret agent roles for the actor in the last ten months alone.
Recently, new Bourne Legacy images hit the Internet – giving us our first look at the villain of the film, played by Edward Norton – as did an interview with the film's director and writer, Tony Gillroy (Michael Clayton).
Courtesy of MTV and Kinopoisk, the images don't reveal much, but they do give off a vaguely understated Bourne-esque vibe. Probably the most revealing image (and really, revealing is a bit of a stretch in this case) is the one showcasing Renner and Norton, face-to-face, looking all intense. One wonders what they're so intense about!
Besides that, there's a picture of a bearded Renner looking down the scope of a sniper rifle and a much larger version of the first official image released.
Check them out below (and click to enlarge):
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Tony Gilroy Interview
The writer/director of the film, Tony Gilroy – who was also responsible for writing the screenplays for the previous Bourne films – talked to MTV about whether or not Legacy is a different film experience from that of Identity, Supremacy, and Ultimatum:
"Very much. Oh my God, yeah, for a whole bunch of reasons."
But what does that mean of the other films? How does Legacy tie in?
"Everything that happened before was not a dream. Everything that happened was completely real, but you thought you knew what was going on. You thought you were seeing the world, and this movie is telling you that there’s a much larger world, a much larger conspiracy beyond this. The events of the other three films are incredibly present, but they’re not really in this very much. What happens in 'Ultimatum' is really the spark that’s blowing open the door to this movie because the Jason Bourne story is exploding out into the public. Being impossible to conceal it any further is causing problems for this much larger conspiracy. 'Ultimatum' plays in the background of the very beginning of this film."
As to whether or not The Bourne Legacy will be employing the patented shaky-cam action style of the last two Bourne films, Gilroy said:
"Everybody in the world ripped us off. [The shaky-cam has] been done to death at this point. It’s on TV three nights a week, much less Bond and everything else. The worst thing that could have been done would be to just slavishly follow some cookie-cutter pattern of visual style and storytelling style. It’s a bigger movie in the terms of the journey of it and the scale of it and the amount of stories in it and where it’s going. The great thing about Jason Bourne was that he was claustrophobically stuck down and trying to figure out this moral question. The whole second film is about an apology. It’s really about this guy trying to morally come to grips with the conflict between who he thinks he is and what he’s done. This character in ['The Bourne Legacy'] has no moral conflict whatsoever. Jeremy Renner’s character has the reverse of amnesia. He knows exactly where he’s come from. He knows exactly what the stakes are if he doesn’t achieve his journey. It’s a very different tone, yet it will be very rewarding to people. You should be able to see the movie and not see any of them before. It’s been kind of ironic. The people that were having the most trouble getting their heads around the fact that we were doing this are actually the people who I think will ultimately be the most happy about what we’re doing. It has a lot of payback for the true fans."
As a filmgoer who much preferred Michael Clayton to the first and last Bourne films – although they were pretty good, too – I'm firmly in the camp that'll be giving The Bourne Legacy a fair shake.
How about yourselves, Screen Ranters? Will you be seeing this one in theaters, or is the lack of Matt Damon and Jason Bourne enough to keep you away?
The Bourne Legacy, which will co-star Rachel Weisz, Joan Allen, Oscar Isaac, Corey Stoll, David Strathairn, Albert Finney, Scott Glenn, and Stacy Keach, hits theaters August 3rd, 2012.
Follow me on Twitter @benandrewmoore.