Fans of Jason Bourne have reason to cheer. Director Paul Greengrass and actor Matt Damon are bringing the super spy suffering from amnesia back to the big screen. Titled Jason Bourne, the new film is the fourth in the series that began with The Bourne Identity (2002), which was followed by The Bourne Supremacy (2004) and The Bourne Ultimatum (2007). A spin-off called The Bourne Legacy, starring Jeremy Renner as a CIA agent called Aaron Cross, was released in 2012, but Bourne himself did not appear in the film. What’s an omelette without egg, eh?
Before you queue up to buy tickets for Jason Bourne, releasing in India on August 5, here are ten things you should know about the character.
1. Bourne in books
There are 13 books in the Bourne series. First three, The Bourne Identity (1980), The Bourne Supremacy (1986) and The Bourne Ultimatum (1990), were written by Robert Ludlum, who died in 2001. Eric Van Lustbader wrote the other 10. The latest in the series is The Bourne Enigma, published in 2016.
2. Bourne in flicks
The Bourne books are very different from Bourne movies. The scriptwriters have picked only the names of the characters and their traits from the books. The movie plots have been different. For instance, The Bourne Legacy was entirely different from the book of the same name. The book introduces Jason Bourne’s son, Joshua aka Khan, an international assassin. The movie is about Cross, who has no relation to Bourne.
3. First and faithful adaptation
The first movie adaptation of The Bourne Identity came in 1988. It was directed by Roger Young. Richard Chamberlain played the lead role. This movie was more faithful to the plot of the book.
4. Bourne's Indian connection
There has been an Indian adaptation of the book The Bourne Identity—the 1989 Tamil movie Vetri Vizha, directed by Prathap K. Pothan and starring Kamal Hassan.
5. Damon wasn't the first choice
Matt Damon was not the first choice to play Jason Bourne in the series that began in 2002. The filmmakers had considered Russell Crowe, Sylvester Stallone, Matthew McConaughey and Brad Pitt.
6. Different directors
The Bourne Identity, released in 2002, was directed by Doug Liman. Paul Greengrass directed the second and third movies in the series.
7. Bringing Bourne back
In The Bourne Ultimatum, which was meant to be the final film in the series, Bourne was given a ‘clean exit’—he swam away from the villains and was presumed dead. When asked about a fourth film in the series, Damon said in 2007, “We have ridden that horse as far as we can.”
8. A Bourne movie without Bourne
Tony Gilroy, who wrote the screenplays for the three films, wrote and directed the fourth film in the franchise, without Bourne in it.
9. Damon and Bourne
Damon agreed to play Bourne for the fourth time only after Greengrass came on board in 2014.
10. Action over conversation
Unlike in earlier films, in Jason Bourne, Greengrass has given more importance to action than conversation. Damon has just 25 dialogues in the film.