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Should the Jason Bourne Movies be Rebooted? – TheFantasyTimes

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By Jitin Gambhir

Should the Jason Bourne Movies be Rebooted?



The Bourne franchise follows the action-packed story of a CIA operative who becomes a hunted and disavowed agent. The series’ creators have hinted at the possibility of a sixth installment or a reboot of the beloved spy-thriller franchise. They suggest that a fresh creative team could take on the project with a new storyline and offer a perfect opportunity for fans to see their favorite spy turned rogue in a different light.

The fourth installment, The Bourne Legacy, attempted to offer a new perspective by introducing Jeremy Renner as Aaron Cross, a black-ops agent experimented on at Blackbriar. When Bourne threatens to expose the company’s years of research, Cross becomes the next target. However, neither Damon nor Renner seems keen on returning to their roles anytime soon.

Universal Pictures appears to be interested in restarting the series from scratch, with a fresh cast and creative team. With the recent success of spy-thrillers like The Recruit, The Night Agent, and Jack Ryan, now could be the perfect time to reboot the franchise. Frank Marshall, the producer of the Bourne films, confirmed that he was hoping to find a new story and filmmaker for the series.

The Bourne franchise has been a staple of the espionage genre for over two decades, with the fifth installment released in 2016. Although it concluded the series, Universal seems to be looking for a new actor to take over the role of the secret agent.

The franchise already tried a spin-off series with the USA original Treadstone. The show referenced the events of the movies and attempted to create a new world for the spy-thriller. However, it received only one season before being canceled. The 2012 reboot with Renner playing Aaron Cross was also unsuccessful and was subsequently shelved.

The spy-thriller genre has seen a resurgence in recent years, with captivating stories of secret agents, espionage, and international intrigue. Audiences have been drawn into the worlds of James Bond, Jason Bourne, and John Wick, with recent additions like Jack Ryan, The Recruit, and The Night Agent. The spy genre offers complex plots, intrigue, suspense, and stories of double-crosses and unexpected twists.

The Week believes that audiences enjoy spy-thrillers because they offer an escape from reality and the incompetence of modern states. The genre provides a sense of safety and security that someone is out there protecting the country’s interests. With this need still prevalent in society, the spy-thriller genre will continue to gain popularity.

The Bourne franchise tells the story of a secret operative of the CIA, who quickly becomes disavowed and hunted after. The creators of the series have talked about a sixth installment film or even rebooting the spy-thriller series. It is said that a restart to the franchise, which began with Matt Damon, would be the way the creators would like to go with a new creative team attached to the project. Now would be the perfect time and opportunity to get new filmmakers and a new story for the fans’ favorite spy turned rogue.


The series did try its best with a new story in its fourth installment, The Bourne Legacystarring Jeremy Renner in 2012. The creators gave us the story of Aaron Cross — a black-ops agent who had been one of six agents experimented on at Blackbriar. When Bourne threatens to take down the company and years of research, Cross becomes the next experiment to be terminated. Damon and Renner do not seem to be wanting to return to their characters anytime soon, but Universal seems to want to hit the reset button and take the series back to basics. So, should the Jason Bourne series get the reboot treatment?

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Is Now a Good Time for a Reboot?

Matt Damon as Jason Bourne
Universal Pictures

The creators of the Bourne franchise have been teasing that sixth film could be in the works for the spy-thriller series about a burnt CIA operative. They are even discussing restarting the series with a new creative team to take over the project. Now is even a good time to think about rebooting the series after the success of The Recruit, The Night Agentand Jack Ryan. Frank Marshall, the producer of the films, told IGN“I’m hoping that we can find a new story for Bourne and a new filmmaker.”

The Jason Bourne franchise has been a reliable source of high-stakes espionage for over two decades. Bourne even made a comeback in 2016 with its fifth installment to the franchise and left fans to believe that the series was coming to a close. Universal seems to have the same idea and may even be looking for a new actor to helm the series. With series like Transformers and Lethal Weapon also getting reboots or sequels, now may be a good time to also get on this train.

Related: Bourne Franchise Cast and Character Guide

Spin-Off or Reboot

treadstone-series
USA Network

The Bourne franchise has already tried giving fans a spin-off series with the USA original Treadstone. The TV show acknowledged the events that happened in the movies and made references to Bourne himself. It was supposed to create a new world for the spy-thriller to live in, however, the show only received one season before it was canceled. Universal tried in 2012 to reboot the series with Renner playing the leading man. Aaron Cross was the new protagonist as a black ops agent, but the movie at best received a lukewarm response. Any attempt at continuing the new reboot was subsequently shelved.

The real question becomes to try another spin-off or reboot the series entirely. The soft reboot of Aaron Cross as the new Bourne quickly became shelved before it could even take off. The last Bourne film seemed like a satisfying conclusion, so when it moved to primetime television, audiences did not want another redundant story.

Related: The Bourne Identity: Where the Cast Is Today

Treadstone seemed to be trending in that direction, but fans were surprised at what they actually got. The show was stimulating and a refreshing surprise. However, the show was before its time and not what audiences were looking for. Today, the spy-thriller genre is having a resurgence, and a reboot might be able to survive among Bourne fans and gain some new ones along the way.

Spy Thrillers Are Getting the Greenlight

james-bond-daniel-craig

The spy genre has been a constant in pop culture for decades with captivating stories of secret agents, espionage, and international intrigue. Audiences have gotten sucked into the worlds of James Bond, Jason Bourne, and John Wick, with more recent additions like Jack Ryan, The Recruitand The Night Agent. These stories are filled with surveillance and counterintelligence narratives that give audiences heart-pumping combat sequences and intelligence gathering. The intriguing part of the plot comes with how each of these spies work within the government or other agencies to protect their countries and their interests. Operating in secret, these agents use sabotage and covert operations to achieve their objectives.

The spy-thriller genre also gives complex plots, intrigue, a ton of suspense, and stories giving double-crosses, unexpected twists, and extremely high-stakes. So, why are audiences loving the spy genre so much all of a sudden? The Week claims it is because audiences do want to face the harsh reality and incompetence of the modern state. This is why Netflix saw a huge spike in viewership for The Recruit and The Night Agent. There seems to be a deep societal need to believe that there are agencies tasked with understanding and confronting the enemy. With this belief still ringing true for the average citizen, this genre will continue to gain traction.

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