Paul Greengrass Officially Leaves Bourne Behind With Honor

December 1, 2009
Source: Variety

Paul Greengrass

Yesterday, we reported that director Paul Greengrass had left Universal's Bourne 4 over problems with the studio. Greegrass, who directed both The Bourne Supremacy and Ultimatum, was planning on directing the fourth Bourne movie until the studio decided (without telling him) to take on a second screenwriter to develop a "parallel script." That decision upset Greengrass and combined with Universal's struggles over the cost of Green Zone, his other upcoming movie with Matt Damon, the two decided to part ways. This was officially confirmed by Variety today and Greengrass has issued a very respectful statement as seen below.

"You won't find a more devoted supporter of the Bourne franchise than me. I will always be grateful to have been the caretaker to Jason Bourne over the course of The Bourne Supremacy and The Bourne Ultimatum. I'm very proud of those films and feel they express everything I most passionately believe about the possibility of making quality movies in the mainstream."

"My decision to not return a third time as director is simply about feeling the call for a different challenge. There's been no disagreement with Universal Pictures. The opportunity to work with the Bourne family again is a difficult thing to pass up, but we have discussed this together and they have been incredibly understanding and supportive. I've been lucky enough to have made four films for Universal, and our relationship continues. Jason Bourne existed before me and will continue, and I hope to remain involved in some capacity as the series moves on."

Obviously he's going to publicly say that there are no hard feelings, but we know the actual truth, thanks to The Playlist. So what about Bourne 4? If Greengrass definitely isn't going to be back, who can take over the reigns? It'll be quite a monumental task for whatever director they hire in the end. My money is on Tony Gilroy right now. He's in deep with Universal, he helped write all three Bourne screenplays, and directed both Michael Clayton and Duplicity (the latter of which was at Universal). I wouldn't be surprised if they're priming him to take over the Bourne series and even work on the new screenplay as well. Only time will tell.

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I'm glad he's gone. He's a crap director anyway.

jebb on Dec 1, 2009


#1 And you're a painfully low IQ'd moron. Try doing better than Paul before you make a comment like that you pathetic troll. I hope Universal doesn't muck the series up. I hope Damon drops if the "parallel script" causes the original concept to get lost. Maybe Universal should take the advice of an Oscar nominated director to not incorporate a "parallel script" that's probably an attempt to introduce a future character that will be part of some garbage spinoff film series directed by another boring MTV video director. Get some balls Universal and do the right thing.

Quanah on Dec 1, 2009


@ 2 fuck you, and your mother. I'm entitled to my own opinion, just as much as you are too. I simply don't like his directing style. Deal with it.

jebb on Dec 1, 2009


jebb... you should take a hint from this article... when dealing in the public eye it is better to remain respectfull or people might get the idea you are some kind of douchebag as a fan of all three bourne movies, and as a moviewatcher looking forward to Green Zone, i have mixed feelings about this. Because i found all three movies entertaining having greengrass for the fourth would have been likely to produce something i would also enjoy. That being said, I still think a fourth movie is not the best of ideas as the trilogy was wrapped up nicely. Bourne is not Bond and shouldn't be serialized but they are gonna make it anyway and hopefully what they put out won't ruin the previous works (a-la star wars ep1-3)

Janny on Dec 1, 2009


Bummer. I was hoping things could be patched up.

whomever on Dec 1, 2009


Seriously #2 back the fuck off everyone has there own opinion..I actually find his style too shaky and way too fast paced. Also your more of a troll and an idiot for just blatantly jumping on someone that didnt even insult you...asshole.

Cody on Dec 1, 2009


What does this mean for Damon? He's torn...on one side he has The Bourne franchie, a loyal fanbase, and a bigger career...on the other side he has Greengrass who directed The Bourne Supremacy(which in my opinion is the best of them all) and The Bourne Ultimatum who he gonna side with?

xerxex on Dec 1, 2009


Okay guys, we all know #1 is completely wrong... But let's stay on topic. If you're pissed Greengrass isn't directing the next Bourne, talk about that. Or talk about who could be a good replacement. Would Tony Gilroy do this franchise justice? Or do they need someone else?

Alex Billington on Dec 1, 2009


I didn't mind Greengrass, but I preferred Bourne done by Doug Liman, for some reason. Either way it could be a good thing.

haha on Dec 1, 2009


I agree with #4. I loved the Bourne films. I really did. But I cannot see a need for a fourth one. Almost assuredly the script will be too much of a reach and way too implausible. The series was mostly grounded in reality. This is just a money grab from Universal. I'm kinda glad to hear Greengrass dropped out. He's a great director, doesn't need to stay in stasis. I hope Matt Damon drops out too.

Scagginsvolley on Dec 1, 2009


dont make a fourth bourne movie.PLEEEEEAAASSE

samuel j on Dec 1, 2009


the first three were great but dont beat a dead horse

samuel j on Dec 1, 2009


Good news. Less shaky cam is a good thing.

filmfann111 on Dec 1, 2009


sucks for the bourne franchise since they were some of the best movies out. guess i won't be seeing bourne 4.

jake the snake on Dec 1, 2009


#1's right--Greenass is a crap director. Your opinion is pretty suspect, Billington. All you seem to trumpet are shit flicks. You and #2 should quit brushing each other's teeth with your dicks. Liman's Bourne is the only decent flick in the whole series.

Chad on Dec 2, 2009


I'm sorry paramout has got rid of paul Greengrass for Bourne 4, i do like the film trailer for the Greenzone pramount may loose out in the end were Bourne 4 film may not be that good as for Tony Gilroy didnot like Duplicity it was shit. 🙁

Cineprog on Dec 2, 2009


Bring back Doug Liman. Damon might return if that happens...

RPD on Dec 2, 2009


Maybe all of this difficulty shows that the Bourne franchise should just quit while it's ahead. I loved Bourne series, but the story arc feels pretty complete to me as a trilogy. The financial side of me knows better, the creative side of me is pretty satisfied.

Dan on Dec 2, 2009


I hope they don't do something stupid like "Bourne in 3D!"

The movie guy on Dec 2, 2009


what about Tony Scott , Alex.... I think he can handle it..

suresh on Dec 2, 2009


I think Greengrass is a very talented director and he made the last two Bourne films intense and very fast paced and lets hope they get someone of the same quality. That being said I wish they would let Bourne rest the ending to the last film was as good as an ending gets for a big action film.

CLAW on Dec 2, 2009


Chad: Greengrass is a far better director than you could ever hope to be and has four times as much maturity. United 93 and Bloody Sunday are two of the best docudramas I've seen this decade, and The Bourne Ultimatum remains one of the few recent action films that I actually own and watch on a semi-regular basis (the other being Casino Royale). Furthermore, Liman's film is by far the weakest of the trilogy (though still considerably better than most other action films). Cody; Sorry, but Quanah isn't the troll here. He called #1 out on a stupid remark but did it maturely whereas you simply typed up a string of obscenities without contributing anything useful. I'm with #s 4, 10, 12, and 18 on this. The Bourne trilogy was great, but this franchise has run its course. Time to move on. Plus, I'm not sure how long Universal is going to survive. With all the costly missteps they've made, they could easily be in the same spot MGM is in now. #17: I'm not entirely sure, but I recall reading that Liman and Damon did not get along when they were filming the first Bourne. xerxex: I'm betting that, within a month or so, Damon will announce that he too is leaving the franchise. He never struck me as keen on a fourth Bourne to begin with. He seems ready to move on to other films. Plus, his career seems pretty good without Bourne, so I don't think he needs to keep this thing going anymore.

Corran Horn on Dec 2, 2009


Jebb and Cody: I'm glad my non-foul mouthed comment hit home with you two. It goes to show you can still get to someone without typing an incessant string of contaminated language. You both may be entitled to your opinions, but I'm entitled to call you out with my opinion. Get use to it. If I didn't write it Jebb, someone else would have. Not every film Greengrass directs incorporates the shaky camera style. I'd challenge people who think that's his style for every film to watch others he's directed. That style worked for the last 2 Borne films... I agree with Corran: The series is done. I thought the last film was brilliant, and it helped round out what I felt was one of the great film trilogies. I know Universal wants to make more money, but they could invest themselves into something else that could potentially grow into a money making franchise as opposed to dig up one that's run its course. Forget about a replacement director. Forget about "parallel" storylines. Damon will surely drop at this point.

Quanah on Dec 2, 2009


I think either way when a franchise gets very devoted to one director, any change has the risk of being very detrimental. Whether or not you like this style, the movies are tied together by this style and to change it for the fourth movie may distract alot of fans and jeopordize the quality movie at stake. They are making a mistake letting him go or causing the drama that made him walk.

Kelly on Dec 2, 2009


@23 You're a freakin' idiot. Get a life, nerd.

Kayle on Dec 2, 2009


I wasn't crazy about the Greengrass shaky-cam in the second and third movies - in the cinema. But for some reason the look works better at home (for me) on a slightly smaller screen and I really really enjoy watching all three whenever they are on. Fast-paced and exciting. It's a great trilogy as is, and it'd be a shame if a fourth put a stink on it, like some other trilogies we know of that this has happened to.

"David Webb" on Dec 3, 2009


I hope this movie never's an excellent trilogy that would only be ruined by a fourth film.

peloquin on Dec 3, 2009

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