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Tommy Lee Jones, at 65, stays incredibly active as an actor. He’s returning to the Men In Black franchise after a 10-year absence to deliver the third installment in that series. He has two more films coming to theaters before year’s end, and is filming another for 2013. But what he really wants to do is direct, and it appears he’s getting ready to do so very soon.
Jones will write, direct, produce and star in The Homesman, a period drama about a pioneer woman and what the trade describes as “a claim-jumping rascal of a man” as they transport three insane women from Nebraska to Iowa. According to Variety, Jones has yet to cast the woman he’ll act alongside. Maybe he can reach out to Sissy Spacek, who co-starred in Jones’ directorial debut, a TNT original movie titled The Good Old Boys.
Jones has been honing his craft behind the camera. He directed the moving Western The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada in 2005, and moved to a TV movie called The Sunset Limited in 2011. It doesn’t sound like he’s picking up any green-screen tricks from his Men In Black director Barry Sonnenfeld for these efforts. Jones, a Texan, favors throwback dramas with grit and personal pain. Homesman fits that mold.
Until then, blockbuster audiences will be able to see what happens to Agent Kay in the third MIB before checking out Jones in Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln. Next year, the Oscar nominee plays a larger-than-life figure in Gen. Douglas MacArthur for Peter Webber’s Emperor. And then, after that, The Homesman? Possible. We’ll keep you posted.