Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Hackers Now Reportedly Say Sony Can Release 'The Interview,' But With Changes Hackers Now Reportedly Say Sony Can Release 'The Interview,' But With Changes George Clooney Pushes For VOD Release Of 'The Interview,' Calls Out Hollywood For Lack Of Courage George Clooney Pushes For VOD Release Of 'The Interview,' Calls Out Hollywood For Lack Of Courage Watch: Sony Releases "In Franco And Rogen We Trust" Promo For 'The Interview' Watch: Sony Releases "In Franco And Rogen We Trust" Promo For 'The Interview' Watch: The Style Of Wes Anderson, Quentin Tarantino, David Fincher, Terrence Malick & More Recreated With Stock Footage Watch: The Style Of Wes Anderson, Quentin Tarantino, David Fincher, Terrence Malick & More Recreated With Stock Footage Surprising Full Cast Revealed For Jason Reitman's Live Read Of 'Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back' Surprising Full Cast Revealed For Jason Reitman's Live Read Of 'Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back' Sony Officially Yanks 'The Interview' From Release Following Hacker Threats Sony Officially Yanks 'The Interview' From Release Following Hacker Threats The 21 Best Performances Of 2014 The 21 Best Performances Of 2014 The 12 Best Shots Of 2014 The 12 Best Shots Of 2014 Baffling First Official Synopsis For Terrence Malick's 'Knight Of Cups' Unveiled Baffling First Official Synopsis For Terrence Malick's 'Knight Of Cups' Unveiled Rumor: 'Batman v. Superman: Dawn Of Justice' Will Address Fan Complaints From 'Man Of Steel' Rumor: 'Batman v. Superman: Dawn Of Justice' Will Address Fan Complaints From 'Man Of Steel' Watch: Christian Bale Goes On A Hedonistic Journey In First Trailer For Terrence Malick's 'Knight Of Cups' Watch: Christian Bale Goes On A Hedonistic Journey In First Trailer For Terrence Malick's 'Knight Of Cups' The 20 Best Movie Posters Of 2014 The 20 Best Movie Posters Of 2014 Recap: 'The Newsroom' Series Finale, Season 3, Episode 6 'What Kind Of Day Has It Been' Recap: 'The Newsroom' Series Finale, Season 3, Episode 6 'What Kind Of Day Has It Been' More Leaks Reveal Reported Plans Around ‘Star Wars’ Episodes 8 & 9 More Leaks Reveal Reported Plans Around ‘Star Wars’ Episodes 8 & 9 Sony Leaks Reveal ‘Aquaman’ Director, ‘X-Men’/’Fantastic Four’ Crossover Plans & More Sony Leaks Reveal ‘Aquaman’ Director, ‘X-Men’/’Fantastic Four’ Crossover Plans & More Review: Assassination Comedy ‘The Interview’ Starring Seth Rogen, James Franco, And Lizzy Caplan Review: Assassination Comedy ‘The Interview’ Starring Seth Rogen, James Franco, And Lizzy Caplan The 20 Best Films Of 2014 The 20 Best Films Of 2014 Watch: 3 Graphic, Very NSFW Clips From Lars von Trier's 'Nymphomaniac Vol II — Director's Cut' Watch: 3 Graphic, Very NSFW Clips From Lars von Trier's 'Nymphomaniac Vol II — Director's Cut' The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki

Jeremy Renner's Biggest Challenge Was "Not Getting Hurt": 10 Things Learned About 'The Bourne Legacy'

The Playlist By Ryan Gowland | The Playlist August 10, 2012 at 12:04PM

This week will finally see the answer to one of Hollywood's great questions: will audiences watch a 'Bourne' movie without Matt Damon? The answer will be provided by Tony Gilroy's "The Bourne Legacy," the first of what could be a potential franchise starring Jeremy Renner as Aaron Cross, a similar agent to Jason Bourne, but a product of the Department of Defense's Operation Outcome, a different training program from the CIA's Treadstone. Gilroy is no stranger to the 'Bourne' franchise, having been a writer or co-writer on all three installments, but once Damon and "Bourne Supremacy" and "Bourne Ultimatum" director Paul Greengrass decided against returning, he was tasked with creating what producer Frank Marshall called a "same-time-quel."  
3
Jeremy Renner, The Bourne Legacy

This week will finally see the answer to one of Hollywood's great questions: will audiences watch a 'Bourne' movie without Matt Damon? The answer will be provided by Tony Gilroy's "The Bourne Legacy," the first of what could be a potential franchise starring Jeremy Renner as Aaron Cross, a similar agent to Jason Bourne, but a product of the Department of Defense's Operation Outcome, a different training program from the CIA's Treadstone. Gilroy is no stranger to the 'Bourne' franchise, having been a writer or co-writer on all three installments, but once Damon and "Bourne Supremacy" and "Bourne Ultimatum" director Paul Greengrass decided against returning, he was tasked with creating what producer Frank Marshall called a "same-time-quel."  

We recently sat in during the "The Bourne Legacy" press conference in Beverly Hills, California, attended by writer/director Tony Gilroy and co-writer (and brother) Dan Gilroy, Marshall and fellow producer Patrick Crowley, as well as cast members Renner, Rachel Weisz and Edward Norton. Here's what we learned about the action sequence, the story and the production that took them around the world.

Jeremy Renner, The Bourne Legacy
1. The 'Bourne' movies are based on reality. Really.
Well, sort of, anyway. 'Legacy' pulls back the curtain on the pharmaceutical nature of the Treadstone and Outcome training programs, which are apparently fictionalized versions of real programs. In Universal's press notes, attention is given to Gilroy's research process, which focused on government projects like DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) that are looking for ways to improve the modern soldier. "There's no drug testing in war," said Gilroy in the notes. "There's a very real appetite to have soldiers with increased energy, higher pain thresholds, and less need for sleep."

During the press conference, Crowley backed up Gilroy's claims and revealed that there is a ring of truth to the training programs in the 'Bourne' films. "I remember talking with Tony, even back in 'Supremacy' [days]. Tony has this intense obsession with the American intelligence community to which he literally said, 'You know, there's Treadstone, but there's a whole bunch of others,'" said Crowley. "And the research that he's done, there are a while lot of parallel agencies. The Department of Defense has got one, National Security's got one, each one of the services has something, so it actually is the way that these organizations are structured."

Sign us up!

Director Tony Gilroy "never, ever, ever" thought he would return to the 'Bourne' series.
2. Coming up with the story for 'Legacy' was like a game.
Gilroy admitted that directing 'Legacy' was not something he "ever, ever, ever" thought he would do, but yearned to "do a big movie." Once Universal asked Gilroy to come up with a story for another 'Bourne,' the director admitted that the process was much like playing a game.

"You know, they tried for a long time - a lot of smart people tried to figure out how to go forward after 'Ultimatum' because it wrapped up so beautifully," Gilroy admitted. "Such a nice package. I was never a part of that. I'm not sure I could have figured out anything else to do with that. By the time everybody had left, and the party was sort of over, they started a second round of 'What do we do post-Bourne?' The first conversation was really like a game. It was really, like, how can we go forward...'You could say that there was a much larger conspiracy. You could say that that was only a small piece of this thing.' So that's a sexy idea. Everybody gets involved in that; everybody likes that idea. 'God, you know what else you could do? You could have 'Ultimatum' play in the background of the first 12-15 minutes of the movie. There could be a phone call from the other movie to our movie!' Everybody gets very excited. And even Danny [Gilroy] got excited. But it's not the real deal, you know there's no movie -- all that's very sexy, it's like a beautiful shell. I didn't get really interested, even in writing a script on it much less directing it, until the character dropped in the slot, when the character came through and we suddenly realized there was a character that had as fundamental an issue, as fundamental a problem, as much meat on the bone as there was for Jason Bourne...that's when it really got interesting. That's when Danny and I started talking to each other 19 times on the phone instead of once a day."

Dan Gilroy concurred. "The mythology of the first franchise sort of allowed itself to be expanded upon. It was interesting to sort of shift the angle on it and say, 'This was going on simultaneously' and there was enough real estate and open space that you could fill in a pretty interesting backdrop and future for the franchise."

Tony added: "It was to fun to put them together and see if everything worked. And for the people that are the super-freak fans, there's a lot of dissecting enjoyment."

This article is related to: Tony Gilroy, Rachel Weisz, Jeremy Renner, Edward Norton, The Bourne Legacy


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates