Edward Norton To Play The Villain In ‘The Bourne Legacy’

Edward Norton has signed on to play the villain opposite of Jeremy Renner in ‘The Bourne Legacy.’ I’ve been skeptical about this project since the beginning. No Matt Damon. No Paul Greengrass at the helm (directed ‘Supremacy’ & ‘Ultimatum’). Jason Bourne himself will not be in the film despite the fact that director/writer Tony Gilroy stands by the fact that he is still alive and out there. The movie shares the title of Eric Van Lustbaber’s book, which was written as a follow-up to Robert Ludlum’s infamous ‘Bourne’ trilogy, despite the fact that Gilroy doesn’t seem to follow the story of the book whatsoever, simply based on the fact that Jason Bourne is the main character in the book.

Let me rewrite the first sentence of this post again.  Edward Norton has signed on to play the villain opposite of Jeremy Renner in ‘The Bourne Legacy.’ Despite my personal skepticism, and reasons for concern, the news of Norton joining the cast pushed me over the edge, where optimism is the only option.  ‘Legacy’ seems almost destined to succeed when you look at the cast alone.  Jeremy Renner will jump into Damon’s shoes, carrying the lead role as an operative from a covert government program.  Renner is a two-time Oscar nominee (Best Actor – The Hurt Locker, Best Supporting Actor – The Town).  As stated earlier, Edward Norton will serve as the villain in ‘Legacy.’ Norton also has two Oscar nominations in his belt, with his roles in ‘Primal Fear’ (Best Supporting Actor) and ‘American History X’ (Best Actor’). Rachel Weisz won an Oscar for her supporting role in ‘The Constant Gardner’, and will play the love interest.  Tony Gilroy’s track record as a writer and as a director are remarkable.  Gilroy has previously directed ‘Michael Clayton’ (Rotten Tomatoes: 90%/Metacritic: 82) and ‘Duplicity’ (Rotten Tomatoes:64%/Metacritic: 69), earning two Oscar nominations for his work in ‘Clayton’ for writing and directing.

Average Grade on Rotten Tomatoes/Metacritic

Tony Gilroy (Director) – 77%/75.5

Tony Gilroy (Writer) – 69.1%/62.6

Jeremy Renner – 60.7%/61

Edward Norton – 66.4%/60

Rachel Weisz – 50.9%/52

Not really sure how this conglomeration of talent can fail.  Count me in on August 3, 2012.

(Some info via The Playlist)

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Posted on July 14, 2011, in News and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. The original Bourne Trilogy didn’t exactly follow Ludlum’s novels too closely either, and in my opinion are better for it. I read ‘The Bourne Identity’ and frankly, this is a rare case where the movie is vastly superior to the book. Ludlum is good with plot and urgency, but he’s terrible at characterization (meaning all of his characters are the same person, in different shoes basically). Matt Damon really became Jason Bourne (Bourne in the book was just as generic as all the characters Ludlum wrote), and that’s going to be a hard legacy to live up to.

    I am excited to see what Norton and Renner (big fan of him in ‘The Town’) can do with this movie. I am sorry to see Greengrass go, though. His direction really gave “Ultimatum” and “Supremecy” a distinctive feel; it felt like a Bourne movie. I have those two movies very high on my list of all time action favorites, it’s going to be hard for ‘Legacy’ to top them for me.

  2. I read somewhere that Gilroy didn’t even read the ‘The Bourne Identity’ before writing the movie. Not a fan of that approach, but I do appreciate his body of work nonetheless.

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