All the principal players are returning for 'Jason Bourne', while 'Independence Day' hopes there's still a way without a Will
Matt Damon is back. Writer, director, producer Paul Greengrass is back. And to ensure that the movie retains its signature story-telling style, so is the editor of The Bourne Ultimatum and The Bourne Supremacy, Christopher Rouse. Greengrass had said that they wouldn’t return until they got the right script and he claims to have it with Jason Bourne, an espionage thriller set in “a post Snowden world.”
With a production budget of $120m, Greengrass shot on 12 different locations around the world, ranging from the Canary Islands and Greece to Berlin, London, Washington DC, and parts of Spain. He got special permission to close down the section of Las Vegas Boulevard known as The Strip for several hours each day – over a period of seven to ten days – to shoot a climactic car chase.
As well as Damon, the other main cast member who returns to the Bourne franchise with this picture is Julia Stiles as Nicki Parsons, the Europe-based CIA operative who has helped the title character in all the earlier Bourne adventures.
Newcomers to the cast are Tommy Lee Jones (in the type of role played by David Strathairn and Chris Cooper in the other films), Oscar-winner Alicia Vikander and Vincent Cassel as the villain (a role once intended for Viggo Mortensen).
The first trailer for Jason Bourne was issued this week (20th April) and the movie will be released worldwide on 29th July.
Soon after the worldwide success of Independence Day in 1996, 20th Century Fox paid writer Dean Devlin a substantial sum of money to pen a script for a sequel. Independence Day had taken $820m on a budget of $75m, so a follow-up seemed a no-brainer. However, after completing the script, Devlin decided not to hand it in because he felt it didn’t measure up to the quality of the first film, and he gave Fox its money back.
Devlin went off and produced the 1998 version of Godzilla (the much derided one with Matthew Broderick), The Patriot with Mel Gibson and Heath Ledger, Eight-Legged Freaks, Cellular and he developed and wrote the TV series The Librarian. It was another 15 years before he took a stab at Independence Day again, having met with director/co-producer Roland Emmerich and agreeing they had a workable storyline. And the storyline became the basis for Independence Day: Resurgence, which Fox still wanted – so badly that they committed to a budget of $200m.
But the studio had decided to spend a big chunk of its money on the special effects and when it refused to pay star Will Smith the $50m he wanted for two sequels, he opted to drop out of the follow-up. Still, all of the other main cast members in Independence Day – Jeff Goldblum, Bill Pullman, Judd Hirsch, Brent Spiner and Vivica A Fox – are on board. Liam Hemsworth – from The Hunger Games franchise – plays the son-in-law of the former president of the United States (Pullman) and Jesse Usher is the Smith character’s step son.
Independence Day: Resurgence, which is released on June 24th, was shot on location at Bonneville Salt Flats in Wendover, Utah, where they made Con Air, John Carter, Pirates of the Caribbean :At World’s End, and, of course, the first Independence Day.