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Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan Is Getting A TV Show, Get The Details

The way that recent cinematic history would have us believing things, almost every book franchise is a successful film franchise, with the same actors returning to reprise the roles that readers love so dearly. Well, that hasn’t been the case at all for Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan novels, which have been adapted into five movies with four different actors playing the lead role. Get ready to see actor number 5 getting the part, but this time on the small screen, as Tom Clancy’s novels are getting the TV treatment.

You might not believe the names that are putting this thing together, either. First, it’s being produced by Michael Bay’s company Platinum Dunes and Paramount TV, as part of an overall deal between the two. Second, it’s being developed and written by former Lost showrunner and Bates Motel creator Carlton Cuse and former Lost writer and current The Returned writer Graham Roland. That’s quite a team, and apparently there’s a bidding war amongst outlets to try and secure the rights.

Jack Ryan has appeared in 12 of Clancy’s novels, but it still comes with no surprise that this new TV series won’t be a direct adaptation of any of those novels specifically, according to Deadline. The idea that Cuse and Roland have for their project will be firmly inspired by the novel series, but they’re taking on Jack Ryan when he’s already an accomplished CIA analyst and operative, possibly bypassing his early history as an investment broker-turned-military man. Though it’s obvious that they could incorporate flashbacks into the story wherever they’re needed, and possibly flash-forwards if they want to alert viewers to Ryan’s eventual successes in Washington D.C.

When you consider the caliber of actors that have taken on the role of Jack Ryan in the movies, it seems like the creative team behind the TV series will be reaching out to some acclaimed stars to take on the TV role. First played by Alec Baldwin in John McTiernan’s stellar The Hunt for Red October, Harrison Ford took over the role for Phillip Noyce’s Patriot Games and Clear and Present Danger. Ben Affleck became Jack Ryan for Phil Alden Robinson’s The Sum of All Fears, and Chris Pine was the latest of Hollywood’s elite to fill the part for Kenneth Branagh’s Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit. Considering how disappointing that latter film was, it’s no surprise they’re making such a drastic change to this next project.

Should this get ordered to series, it would become Cuse’s fifth series on the air, as he’s already got Bates, FX’s The Strain, The Returned and USA’s upcoming The Colony. Roland, who works with Cuse on The Returned, also wrote for Fringe and Almost Human, as well as the upcoming feature film Mile 22.

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Nick Venable
Assistant Managing Editor

Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.