It looks like Paramount really is planning a Jack Ryan revival — and they’re looking to Sam Raimi to help them make it happen.
Variety reports that the studio is “in negotiations” with Raimi to head up what reads like an ambitious plan to reinvigorate the flagging film fortunes of Tom Clancy‘s iconic CIA analyst-turned-global hero. According to the article, Raimi has agreed to direct “a series” of Ryan films, to be produced by Lorenzo di Bonaventura in association with Josh Donen, Raimi’s partner in Buckaroo Entertainment. From the article:
The intention is to generate several films Raimi would develop and direct, featuring Ryan at a younger, more formative point in his career than previously depicted. One invention the studio is considering is to set the film in the present, with the action triggered by a global threat.
The next step, per Variety, is for Paramount to find a writer for the first film’s script while Raimi completes Drag Me to Hell. The first of the new Jack Ryan adventures is being targeted for a summer 2010 release.
Clancy’s creation made his first trip to theaters portrayed by Alec Baldwin, in 1990’s The Hunt for Red October (95 percent on the Tomatometer); the role was taken over by Harrison Ford for 1992’s Patriot Games (78 percent) and 1994’s Clear and Present Danger (80 percent). Eight years later, Ben Affleck stepped in for The Sum of All Fears (58 percent).
Where all those films might wind up differing from the Raimi-directed installments, apparently, is their source material. According to Variety‘s report, Clancy is finishing a new Jack Ryan novel — and since Paramount owns the film rights to the character, the studio has first look — but “the studio hasn’t read it and so hasn’t decided if it will use the new book or come up with an original story.”