Universal Gives Bourne 4 Writer Zetumer Another Shot At Espionage

By Kristy Puchko 2012-02-16 07:24:23discussion comments
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Gather 'round movie fans, and let me share with you the tale of screenwriter Josh Zetumer, and how he came to score a six against seven-figures deal from Universal despite never having had a script produced. You see, back when Universal was hot off of the box office splendor that was Paul Greengrass' The Bourne Ultimatum, they were eager to reunite Greengrass and Matt Damon for a fourth Bourne movie. So, they hired Zetumer to quickly pen a draft of the proposed sequel, while Greengrass and Damon went off to make Green Zone for Universal.

It seemed a huge opportunity for the young and unknown writer, and he crafted a script that had Universal absolutely giddy. Unfortunately, mounting tensions between Greengrass and Universal led to the director bailing on any plans for Bourne 4, and in a sign of solidarity, Damon refused to continue with the franchise unless Greengrass, who directed the second and third Bourne ventures, was on board. And just like that, Zetumer's great script was going nowhere.

Of course Universal eventually chose to shift the focus to a new spy under the Bourne banner, and Jeremy Renner signed on to star. However this script was not penned by Zetumer, but by Tony Gilroy, who contributed to each script of the film's initial trilogy and was brought on to helm The Bourne Legacy. While the studio insists it still hopes Damon will someday return to the Bourne franchise, the immediate future offered nothing certain, and Zetumer's Bourne was put on indefinite hold. It seemed Zetumer's meteoric rise had ended before it even began.

However, Universal gave Zetumer a chance to pitch an original spy-thriller that could ultimately be spun into a franchise. And Deadline reports the studio has just bought his pitch for a shockingly hefty sum. There's no word on his proposed plot, but apparently Universal has plenty of confidence in the up-and-coming screenwriter. And they're not alone.

Over at Warner Bros., two of Zetumer's scripts are currently in development. The first, called Vale, is a supernatural detective story with Zombieland director Ruben Fleischer slated to produce; the other is Zetumer's Black List script Infiltrator, which has Leonardo DiCaprio attached. Then, MGM has Jose Padilha iset to direct Zetumer's reboot of the sci-fi crime thriller RoboCop. Simply put, Zetumer has got several irons in the fire, but his latest deal with Universal may prove the hottest of them all.
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