In a bidding war back in 2008, MGM paid $3 million dollars for the rights to Robert Ludlulm's popular novel The Matarese Circle. Much like his well known Bourne Identity franchise, the book revolves around the world of espionage.
The story centers on two secret agents, American CIA agent Bradley Scofield and Russian KGB agent Vasili Taleniekov, who are sworn enemies but ultimately come together to fight a group of international killers known as the Matarese.
Denzel Washington was slated to play agent Scofield and Tom Cruise would be his nemeses agent Taleniekov. Screenwriting duo Michael Brandt and Derek Haas (2 Fast 2 Furious, 3:10 to Yuma, Wanted) were attached to write the script. David Cronenberg was on board with directing duties but while promoting his latest production, A Dangerous Method, he explained to showbiz411.com what happened to the project.
"I was working on 'The Matarese Circle,' the novel by Robert Ludlum, which was going to star Denzel Washington and Tom Cruise, before MGM went belly up. So I don’t think that’s going to happen now. Tom still likes the idea though," he said.
Too bad becauseTHIS I would definitely pay to see. I don't think Washington and Cruise have worked together so this project would certainly have an interesting dynamic. Come on Hollywood...enough with the cartoons and vampires. Let's get back to good ol' espionage!