Dwayne Johnson is reportedly being sought by Universal to do an adaptation of a Robert Ludlum book. Ludlum's best known character being Jason Bourne and subsequently the hugely successful Bourne movies.
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The book is called The Janson Directive. The story follows Paul Janson (potentially Johnson) who is an ex-Navy Seal and U.S. Government Operative. He presently works as a corporate security consultant to ensure he only picks the jobs he personally wants to do. He is also recovering from a betrayal by his commander in Vietnam who set him up and captured by the Viet Cong. When a mysterious woman asks him to rescue her father and it goes wrong, Janson must try everything in his power to expose a conspiracy.
I think he's a great choice for this kind of role. He has the look, he is very watchable and if there's one thing we know, it is the hand to hand combat wont' be a problem. I would just hope that the movie isn't too flashy with the action.
Check out Johnson and Vin Diesel as they fight in Fast 5:
I think it could be a really good direction for Johnson to play something slightly understated with sleuthing elements. Ludlum's work is known for its great attention to detail and I think doing this too big could wreck such a good property as The Janson Directive.
There are obvious similarities here to Bourne. However, the military aspect of the story could be interesting and I'll be curious to see if it's set during Nam or they upgrade it to Iraq.
Universal has plans to adapt the books into a franchise and it has been reported that they want Johnson as their lead.
Given Johnson's track record, most especially in the last few years with joining the Fast and Furious series and the G.I. Joe series, he has inherited a reputation of being a bankable star. Now, with the upcoming Hercules film, the studio will be keeping an eye to see if Johnson can carry a big budget film on his name alone. If he can then we can expect to see him leading lots more studio movies.
What do you think of Johnson as a Bourne-esqe character?
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