Jack Ryan Needs A New Director As Jack Bender Departs The Project

Chris Pine in Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit
(Image credit: Paramount Pictures)

I'm starting to believe that we may never see Jack Ryan on the big screen ever again. A new installment in the franchise has been whispered about since 2009, but since then the production has faced roadblock after roadblock, including scheduling issues for star Chris Pine with the Star Trek sequel - which is only now just starting to come together - and rewrites to the script. But while you may think that the rough water is behind the boat, think again.

Variety has learned that Jack Bender, who has been attached to direct the untitled project since August 2010, has been forced to move on. The trade says that Bender simply has too much on his plate right now in the TV universe, as he is an executive producer on Alcatraz and is going to direct the SyFy pilot Rewind, and will not be available to make the movie. When asked for comment both Paramount and Skydance Pictures declined. The current plan is to get production going once Pine has finished work on the J.J. Abrams-directed sci-fi sequel, but that means that the studios backing the film are going to have to work hard and fast to find Bender's replacement.

David Koepp wrote the most recent draft of the screenplay, which is based on the character from Tom Clancy's series of novels. From 1990 to the present there have been four Jack Ryan films (The Hunt For Red October, Patriot Games, Clear and Present Danger and The Sum of All Fears) and three actors who have played the lead role (Alec Baldwin, Harrison Ford and Ben Affleck).

This is a pretty big door to be opened and I can guarantee that there will be plenty of filmmakers chomping at the bit to get their chance. But who do you think should be the man or woman put in charge?

Eric Eisenberg
Assistant Managing Editor

Eric Eisenberg is the Assistant Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. After graduating Boston University and earning a bachelor’s degree in journalism, he took a part-time job as a staff writer for CinemaBlend, and after six months was offered the opportunity to move to Los Angeles and take on a newly created West Coast Editor position. Over a decade later, he's continuing to advance his interests and expertise. In addition to conducting filmmaker interviews and contributing to the news and feature content of the site, Eric also oversees the Movie Reviews section, writes the the weekend box office report (published Sundays), and is the site's resident Stephen King expert. He has two King-related columns.