In a stunning turn of events, Matt Damon and writer-director Paul Greengrass have done an about-face and are planning to return to the Bourne franchise at Universal, an individual familiar with the project has told TheWrap.
Representatives for Universal and Greengrass had no comment.
While some will spin this as a win all around a�� for Damon, Greengrass, Universal and most importantly, action fans a�� the trained eye will see shades of grey here.
In recent months, insiders have told TheWrap that Damon has been eager to reprise his signature role as superspy Jason Bourne, even without Greengrassa�� involvement. After We Bought a Zoo, Promised Land, Elysium and The Monuments Men all disappointed at the box office, the actor found himself in desperate need of a hit, especially with pal Ben Afflecka��s career soaring to new heights. That meant returning to Bourne.
Damon was even willing to work with Bourne Legacy star Jeremy Renner and incoming director Justin Lin, though he hoped Greengrass would reconsider his stance, having turned his back on Jason Bourne years ago once the character regained his memory.
While Greengrass is coming off the critically acclaimed hit Captain Phillips, he has struggled to settle on a follow-up film, flirting with several different projects at various studios, though none has stuck yet. Ita��s crazy to think that a director as talented as Greengrass cana��t do what he wants, when he wants, but thata��s Hollywood for you.
While Universal is no doubt delighted by the reversal by Damon and Greengrass, the studio basically swatted away its planned Aaron Cross sequel, which Renner would star in and Lin would direct.
The film was slated for release on 16 July, 2016, but if Greengrass and Damon can close their deals and agree on a script, then their movie will inherit that plum release date, forcing Universal to delay the Aaron Cross sequel again. It already moved once to make way for Universala��s NW biopic Straight Outta Compton.
Lin woulda��ve been pressed for time anyway, as hea��s set to direct the second season of HBOa��s True Detective.
Damon is currently preparing to star in Ridley Scotta��s The Martian. Hea��s represented by WME, while CAA represents Greengrass.
The news was first reported by Deadline. – Yahoo Entertainment