Despite continued discrepancy among Jason Bourne fans about how the next installment in the rogue assassin franchise, The Bourne Legacy, will involve neither star Matt Damon or director Paul Greengrass, Universal continues to rack up an increasingly impressive cast for the film.
Recently, the news got out that Edward Norton is looking to sign on as the villain of Bourne Legacy, opposite Jeremy Renner as a new government-trained killer. Rachel Weisz is also said to be onboard as the female lead in the film, which is neither a reboot of the franchise nor a direct sequel to the last Bourne flick, The Bourne Ultimatum.
Deadline has confirmed that the latest addition to the Bourne Legacy cast is Oscar Isaac, who some readers might recall was reportedly Gilroy's personal choice to headline the film before Universal offered the part to Renner instead. While most people are likely familiar with Isaac for his turn as the unscrupulous villains in Robin Hood and Sucker Punch, their impression of him as an actor should change a bit after they see him in the upcoming, much-buzzed about Noir flick, Drive.
While Renner will be positioned as the new leading man for the Mission: Impossible franchise in this winter's M:I - Ghost Protocol, that is not necessarily the case with Bourne Legacy. Gilory's film, which is NOT based on Eric Van Lustbader's 2004 Bourne novel of the same name, is said to take place within the same universe as the previous Bourne movies - but apparently would allow for Damon to reprise his famous role as an amnesiac assassin in a future installment.
Little in the way of additional information has been released concerning the plot and characters of Bourne Legacy, at this point. Renner is expected to play a deadly renegade "government asset" similar to the Jason Bourne character, while Norton could be either a fellow trained killer or an official attempting to track Renner down. Isaac is reportedly playing "Number 3", another brainwashed government spook.
Even though Bourne Ultimatum brought Jason Bourne's character arc to a more-than-satisfactory conclusion and only partially left the door open for another sequel (or spinoff), there's no denying the talent of the individuals being brought onboard for Bourne Legacy. Gilroy was involved with scripting all three previous Bourne pictures and landed a couple of Academy Award nominations for his directorial debut, the smart legal thriller Michael Clayton - meaning his connection to the project also reads as a positive.
So, all things considered, Bourne Legacy sounds like it could be one of the best unnecessary sequels ever made. Take that as you will.
The Bourne Legacy is scheduled to hit U.S. theaters on August 3rd, 2012.