UPDATED: ‘Bourne Legacy’ Likely Not Damon’s Bourne

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Photo: Universal Pictures

UPDATED: Now Entertainment Weekly is saying Universal told them Gilroy is writing the script. Whatever, I wash my hands of it until more solid information comes in.

I didn’t want to write this, but considering I have already written two items recently and not one of them is necessarily accurate I felt it was best I did. Third time’s a charm anyway right? Here goes.

First off, my article announcing Tony Gilroy was returning to write The Bourne Legacy, the fourth film in the Bourne franchise isn’t exactly a correct reading of the facts. Gilroy is returning to the franchise, but he’s being brought in to “write the treatment,” not a screenplay. That’s my fault. While he may still write the script that’s not his immediate task.

It was also mentioned Gilroy would be writing the “Bourne Bible,” which I mistook for some kind of book venture related to the goings on in the Bourne franchise. While that isn’t necessarily wrong, the use of that material is where I was off. This won’t be a book for sale as much as it will be a set of rules, guidlines and information pertaining to the world Bourne lives in for future filmmakers and screenwriters to heed as the franchise moves forward. In the comments on my first article Jesse was on to this long before I was, and it makes total sense considering where the franchise is actually heading.

My article asking “The Playlist did a little sleuthing and a Universal Studios source told them current reports were “misleading.” They say the next Bourne film is not a prequel or a sequel, but “a continuation of the franchise,” which, of course, is still misleading and leads to even more speculation, but at least it’s a change in the current. Ed Davis at The Playlist suggests this new information means the series will likely continue to tell related stories in the Operation Treadstone storyline.

This makes sense, to a point. Correct me if I am wrong, but didn’t Bourne kill everyone like him that worked in the Treadstone project? Didn’t Clive Owen play the last of the brain-washed assassins in the field in The Bourne Identity and at the end of that film weren’t the doors on Treadstone shut? Of course, that opened the franchise up to Blackbriar, but even that was snuffed out by the close of The Bourne Ultimatum.

Maybe I am forgetting something, but by my count everyone is either dead or behind bars, which makes a “continuation of the franchise” without Damon’s Bourne virtually impossible based on the news we are getting. Perhaps a midstream tangent is viable, but a continuation? I know David Straitharn had some operatives working for him in Ultimatum, but they seemed like nothing more than assassins for hire, not some new story thread that can lead to further films. The doors on Treadstone and Blackbriar, based on my observation seem to be shut. Does anyone out there see it differently? Am I missing something?