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Oscar nominated writer/director Tony Gilroy will take the reigns of the franchise he helped to write. Deadline reports that Universal studios and Gilroy are reaching a deal to direct the franchise’s fourth installment, tentatively titled The Bourne Legacy (though not related to the book of the same title). Gilroy was previously hired to write the film and will now add it to his directing credits, which already include Duplicity and the acclaimed drama Michael Clayton.
There are still a lot of questions lingering around the fourth Bourne film seeing as Matt Damon has last been quoted as saying he’d only return to the franchise if Paul Greengrass, director of The Bourne Supremacy and The Bourne Ultimatum, did the same. Obviously, that’s not the case, but the Bourne property is one of Universal’s most coveted and they are prepared to move on with or without Damon.
A little bit would certainly be lost without Damon as the titular assassin. At the same time, the previous three films definitely formed a set trilogy and if there’s a time for a “new beginning,” it’s now. There are plenty of great stars out there and Universal would no doubt find a comparable talent. At the same time, Bourne is not quite James Bond at the moment (three films to Bond’s 22), so success beyond Damon couldn’t be deemed fact.