The Bourne trilogy, especially Supremacy and Ultimatum, were terrific not only because they were a strong spin on the spy genre, but also because they were a thoughtful commentary on the Bush administration. However, the world has changed drastically since then, and it looks like the Bourne franchise will adapt accordingly.
Speaking to Buzzfeed, Matt Damon says that he and director Paul Greengrass finally came up with a new idea for Bourne after the NSA whistleblowing from Edward Snowden. “Without giving too much of it away, it’s Bourne through an austerity-riddled Europe and in a post-Snowden world,” Damon said. “It seems like enough has changed, you know? There are all these kinds of arguments about spying and civil liberties and the nature of democracy.”
Damon and Greengrass have always been interested in the real-world ramifications of the franchise (as opposed to a franchise like Bond, which is more old-school thrills and less concerned with geopolitics), and dealing with a post-Snowden world seems like fertile territory for a sequel (at least more than the protagonist whining about his chems every five minutes).
As for where Bourne 5 will take the character:
“We’re starting in Greece, you know, the beginning of democracy,” he said — also a nod to the country’s current financial crisis that is plaguing the greater European economy. “And the movie ends in Las Vegas, the most grotesque incarnation of….” Damon trailed off with a laugh,
Bourne goes to Vegas, baby? While these movies can be deadly serious at times, it should be a thrill to see him fighting in the bright, gaudy lights.
It will also be interesting to see if this will work as a standalone story, or if Damon and Greengrass are using this as a springboard for a new trilogy of movies. I’m sure Universal is also curious if there’s some plan to try and bring in The Bourne Legacy’s Aaron Cross at some point, although that film may ultimately be lost to the sands of time—a stopgap until the real Bourne returned.
The untitled Bourne sequel begins filming next week, and opens July 29, 2016. The film also stars Alicia Vikander, Julia Stiles, and Tommy Lee Jones.