“Making a movie about the war in Iraq” is quickly turning into just another way of saying “losing tons of money at the box office,” but director Paul Greengrass isn’t letting that stop him.
Variety reports that the as-yet-untitled thriller that Greengrass is filming with Matt Damon — inspired by Rajiv Chandrasekaran’s Imperial Life in the Emerald City: Inside Iraq’s Green Zone — started shooting in Spain yesterday. Joining Damon are Amy Ryan, currently riding high on critics’ year-end best-of lists for her supporting turn in Gone Baby Gone, and Greg Kinnear. From the article:
Damon plays an officer who teams with a senior CIA officer to search for evidence of weapons of mass destruction. Ryan will play a New York Times foreign correspondent sent to Iraq to investigate the U.S. government’s WMD claims. Kinnear plays another CIA officer. Antoni Corone has been cast as a colonel.
Much has been made of the failure of Iraq-themed films to gain any traction at the box office; whether they’re framed as thoughtful character studies (In the Valley of Elah, $6.5 million box office) or popcorn action flicks (The Kingdom, $47 million), audiences seem to tune them out with equal enthusiasm. Still, Greengrass has experience turning headlines into movies — he directed United 93, after all — and his last project with Damon was a little picture called The Bourne Ultimatum.