Jack Ryan Returns

By Josh Tyler 2006-11-23 00:00:00discussion comments
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Jack Ryan gets too much credit as an iconic character. There’s this tendency to place him on a level playing field with say, Jason Bourne. He’s not. Most people don’t even know who Jack Ryan is. Really, it’s just a name that was used by characters in several movies on similar topics based on books by Tom Clancy. He hasn’t even consistently played by one actor, or even actors of the same age group. Jack Ryan is not a franchise character, he’s just a name Clancy used in his books.

So it seems sort of foolish to want to resurrect him. It’s not like there’s a lot of audience interest in him. He’s not James Bond. But every couple of years the return of Jack Ryan rumors start circulating. They’ve started again over at Moviehole, where Clint says the wheels are in motion to put the Clancy created CIA operative back on screen.

The difference is that this time, one of Tom Clancy’s books won’t be used as a model for his adventure. The studio has the rights to make a movie about the character, and evidently the right to do it without Tom.

Jack Ryan’s first movie was The Hunt for Red October, where he was played by Alec Baldwin. He was then played by Harrison Ford in several mostly unrelated, mostly mediocre thrillers also based on Clancy novels, Clear and Present Danger for example. Paramount then toyed with the idea of making a series of movies about a younger Jack Ryan with his last outing, the 2002 Ben Affleck movie The Sum of All Fears. That never panned out, so now they’re pushing for it again. You’ve got to think that this renewed interest has at least something to do with the supreme success of James Bond. Paramount probably thinks people want more spy movies, so they’re rolling out theirs. But Jack Ryan, you are no James Bond.
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