Oct 22, 2013

Tradecraft: Jason Statham Joins Melissa McCarthy and Bridesmaids Director on Comedic Female-Driven Spy Franchise

In June, The Wrap (via Dark Horizons) reported that Bridesmaids and The Heat director Paul Feig was plotting a female-driven spy comedy, Susan Cooper, and hoping it had the makings of a franchise. Now Deadline reports that Feig's frequent collaborator Melissa McCarthy is set to star, and the Transporter himself, Jason Statham, is in talks to join her. Feig wrote the script, and described the project to The Wrap as "a two-hander." According to Deadline, Statham will be playing a spy on the same side as McCarthy's titular agent, so perhaps he's the other hand in this comedic spy movie. If so, I'm sold! While I'm always happy to see Statham do his thing, it will be nice to watch him stretch himself a bit with something slightly different. The tough-guy actor actually excels in comedic action movies like Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels and The Italian Job, though it's been quite a while since he's done one. (Statham also made a cameo appearance in the 2006 version of The Pink Panther.) Feig told The Wrap that Susan Cooper will be "a realistic comedy about a female James Bond" rather than an out and out send-up like Get Smart or Johnny English. He said he was inspired to write the script by the 2006 Casino Royale, which he counts among his favorite movies.

Oct 15, 2013

Title Sequence From a Peter Graves Spy Series that Never Was

Watch this credits sequence and tell me this wouldn't have been the best show ever. No! You're wrong. It clearly would have been.

Call to Danger was filmed as a pilot in 1973 for CBS and would have seen Peter Graves follow up his successful run on Mission: Impossible with another spy series. Had the show gone to series, it would have once again seen Graves as a team leader recruiting citizens to spy week after week. He played a government agent who used a supercomputer (those were big at the time) to find ordinary citizens whose unique abilities qualified them to take on specific missions. The premise is indeed similar to the original premise of Mission: Impossible (after seven seasons, it was easy to forget that Willy and Barney and Paris and Cinnamon and the rest of the gang were not meant to be professional spies, but amateurs enlisted for their unique talents), and to the short-lived 1980s spy series Masquerade, with Rod Taylor. It was also more or less the premise of Warren Ellis' popular comic book series Global Frequency, which was filmed twice as a pilot (the second time with 24's Michelle Forbes) but never went to series. Apparently this concept lends itself well to multiple interpretations, because the Call to Danger pilot was actually filmed three times!

A half-hour version in 1961 starred Larry Blyden in essentially the same premise. According to Patrick J. White in his essential Complete Mission: Impossible Dossier, producer Perry Lafferty described it by saying, "If you had perfect pitch, could speak Spanish, and ride a unicycle, you'd be in this computer bank. When there was some kind of situation they couldn't solve with their own personnel, they would go to this computer agency and see if any of these people could match their plan." Though the half-hour version didn't sell, the concept was revamped as an hour-long black and white pilot in 1966, produced by Paul King and starring Graves. (You can see the opening credits for that one, with a theme by Hawaii Five-0's Morton Stevens, at 4:05 in this video.) That version didn't sell, either, but it was his performance in that pilot that landed Graves his starring role on the second season of Mission: Impossible! And when the handwriting appeared to be on the wall for Mission after seven seasons, this third attempt was commissioned, again starring Graves and this time written and produced by Mission: Impossible's Laurence Heath. As it happened, Mission: Impossible was cancelled, but sadly Call to Danger wasn't picked up. CBS ended up airing the third Call to Danger pilot as a TV movie in 1973. Man, what I wouldn't give today to have another Peter Graves spy series to work through on DVD! In some alternate dimension, Graves kept right on spying on the Syndicate throughout the Seventies.

Director, Cast Changes on Le Carre Adaptation Our Kind of Traitor

I was worried when director Justin Kurzel, previously attached to the film adaptation of John le Carré's 2010 thriller Our Kind of Traitor, committed to a new film of Macbeth earlier this year. What did that mean for Our Kind of Traitor? The Daily Mail's Baz Bamigboye (via Dark Horizons) reports that the le Carré movie continues to move forward, but with a change at the helm. Producer Simon Cornwell (son of David Cornwell, aka John le Carré) told Bamigboye that Susanna White, who directed the BBC/HBO co-production Parade’s End starring Benedict Cumberbatch, has replaced Kurzel as director of Our Kind Of Traitor. The cast, which at one point was rumored to prospectively include Ewan McGregor (Haywire), Ralph Fiennes (Skyfall), Mads Mikkelson (Casino Royale) and Jessica Chastain (Zero Dark Thirty), seems to also be in flux. While Cornwell says that McGregor is still interested in playing Perry, a disillusioned academic who along with his lawyer girlfriend is drawn into a web of espionage involving MI6 and a Russian gangster, Mikkelson has had to back out of playing the gangster, Dima, due to scheduling issues. (Probably because he stars on the American TV show Hannibal.) That's too bad; he would have been good. But it's such a great, showy role that it's bound to attract an equally great actor! Cornwell also told Bamigboye that they intend to start shooting "in the first half of next year" (of course, we've heard that before) and that writer Hossein Amini (Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit) was currently revising his script with an eye to bulk up the role of Perry's girlfriend, Gail. "She won’t be Charlie’s Angels," he said, "but she’ll be stronger than in the book." Frankly, I'm surprised to hear the author's son speak so dismissively of the novel's Gail. I thought she was already one of the strongest and best female characters le Carré has ever written, and I really hope they don't change her role too much! Meanwhile, the next le Carre film we'll see in theaters will be Anton Corbijn's A Most Wanted Man, starring Philip Seymour Hoffman and Rachel McAdams, which Lionsgate will release in the U.S.

Oct 14, 2013

Hilarious A View To A Kill Video

This first came to my attention a few years ago via a memberon the CBn forums (Trevelyan 006). I meant to post the link then, but somehow never got around to it. Since then I've watched A View To A Kill twice (it's probably the Bond I watch the least often after Quantum of Solace), and every time I see it now I can't help but flash back to this video and laugh. Intrepid video editor m0gdred has made a particularly dated scene from that movie featuring Christopher Walken and Roger Moore quite hilarious. Enjoy.

Oct 11, 2013

Tradecraft: Dylan McDermott Joins Survivor

The other day we heard about Survivor, a new spy movie starring Milla Jovovich, Emma Thompson, Angela Bassett and Pierce Brosnan. Now Deadline reports that Dylan McDermott (The GridOlympus Has Fallen, Hostages) has landed the male lead in the film. Hm. It's too bad they couldn't have found someone a little bigger. That somewhat dilutes an otherwise stellar cast. Oh well. I'm still excited for this one. Survivor is written by spy novelist Philip Shelby and directed by V for Vendetta's James McTeigue.

Archer Flies Into the Danger Zone

I suppose it was in some way inevitable, yet I never saw it coming. Those magnificent bastards at the brilliant FX animated spy comedy Archer have created this Archerized version of Kenny Loggins' "Danger Zone" video from the Top Gun soundtrack. And, of course, it is awesome. This was made for the Archer presentation at the New York Comic Con this weekend, but FX were kind enough to share it with the world to help tide us over until January, when Archer returns with a new season.

Oct 9, 2013

Young Bond Returns in 2014

It's been a big week or two for fans of the literary 007! Yesterday, William Boyd's James Bond continuation novel Solo (set in 1968) was published in the United States (after debuting in the UK a few weeks ago), and today Ian Fleming Publications announced that the Young Bond spin-off series (targeted at Young Adult readers) will resume in 2014 under the stewardship of a new author! Between 2005 and 2008, author Charlie Higson penned five novels for IFP (beginning with Silverfin) about the adventures of James Bond as a boy, long before he ever became a spy. Since Higson was working in the timeline of Fleming's novels (originally published in the 1950s and 60s), these boyhood adventures took place in the early 1930s while the future 007 was a student at Eton. This premise, clearly designed to cash in on the young adult fiction boom that came in the wake of Harry Potter's success, seemed ludicrous to many Bond fans when it was first announced, myself included. But somewhat improbably, Higson pulled it off with astonishing success. His novels were highly enjoyable, respectful of the original Bond canon, and huge hits in the UK. One thing we always knew about Bond's childhood, thanks to the obituary M writes in Fleming's You Only Live Twice, was that he was kicked out of Eton after an "incident" involving a maid. Higson's Eton-set series, therefore, was headed inexorably towards that moment, and sure enough, in his final volume, By Royal Command, James Bond is expelled from Eton.

The new series, therefore, will pick up after that, presumably following the teenage James to Fettes. According to IFP's press release, Random House will publish a quartet of brand new Young Bond adventures starting in fall of 2014. Unfortunately Charlie Higson isn't back for this round. Instead the new Young Bond novels will be written by Steve Cole. Cole is the author of the Atrosaurs books (a children's series I'm not familiar with, evidently geared towards younger readers than the Young Bond novels), as well as several Doctor Who tie-ins and, most relevantly, a teen spy series called Tripwire (the latter co-written with Chris Hunter). According to IFP, he is also a lifelong fan of Fleming's Bond novels. Here's a quote from Cole along with some pertinent details from the press release:
‘I first encountered Bond in print as a teenager, when I read "From a View to a Kill." Fleming´s writing was so vivid and authentic, Bond and the world he inhabited seemed suddenly real to me – and the danger and glamour led me through book after book. It´s both a thrilling privilege and an exciting challenge now to be shaping a new era in the life of such an iconic character – with many firsts and surprises to come as James´s life in the dangerous 1930s develops.’Cole’s first Young Bond novel will launch with a bang in Autumn 2014. It will be published in hardback on RHCP’s highly respected Jonathan Cape children’s imprint.
So these ones will all be published in hardcover in the UK. Higson's first three books debuted as paperback originals before switching to hardcover with the fourth book, Hurricane Gold. (Though the first three were subsequently reprinted in hardcover limited editions.) Those were published by Penguin children's imprint Puffin in Britain, and by Miramax/Hyperion in the United States. No U.S. publisher has yet been named for the new quartet of Young Bond novels. Well.... here's hoping Steve Cole has what it takes to live up to Higson's superb start! I can't wait to find out. (And in the meantime, I've just ordered the first book in the Tripwire series for a taste of his spy style!)

Read my review of Higson's third Young Bond novel, Double of Die, here.
Read my review of Higson's fourth Young Bond novel, Hurricane Gold, here.
Read my review of Higson's fifth Young Bond novel, By Royal Command, here.
Read my review of The Young Bond Rough Guide to London here.

Oct 8, 2013

Tradecraft: Busy Pierce Brosnan Spies Another Day

It looks like there will be more espionage in Pierce Brosnan's future after The November Man! Deadline reports that the former Bond star is among the impressive ensemble cast of Survivor, a new spy thriller directed by James McTeigue (V for Vendetta, Ninja Assassin). Milla Jovovich (The Fifth Element) stars as "a State Department employee newly posted to the American embassy in London where she is charged with stopping terrorists from getting into the U.S." She quickly finds herself at the center of an international conspiracy. Discredited and framed for crimes she didn't commit, and pursued by assassins, she's forced to go on the run and attempt to clear her name while preventing a large-scale terrorist attack on New York's Times Square New Year's Eve celebration. I love it! The plot sounds very, very Ludlumy. (Particularly similar to The Aquitaine Progression.) Hm, perhaps that's no coincidence. Irwin Winkler, who is currently adapting Ludlum's The Sigma Protocol, produces, with Charles Winkler, and Phil Shelby wrote the script. Could this be the same Philip Shelby who penned some of the Ludlum-inspired Covert One novels? (That's a paperback series published under the Ludlum brand with his name splashed across the cover in huge letters even over a decade after his death, but written, obviously, by other authors.) I wonder. Brosnan and his Love Punch co-star Emma Thompson round out the cast, along with Angela Bassett (Alias). I absolutely loved one McTeigue movie so far, V for Vendetta, but felt quite the opposite way about his follow-up, Ninja Assassin (review here). Hopefully he'll be in V form for Survivor! Shooting is scheduled to get underway January 20 in London.

Before then, Brosnan will shoot The Coup in Thailand, with cameras scheduled to finally roll later this month on a project we first heard about over a year ago which was originally supposed to film last fall. Owen Wilson stars in that one, as a father trying to get his family to safety when the Southeast Asian country they're living in erupts in a violent coup. Brosnan plays some sort of mysterious government operative... and you know I love it when Brosnan plays government operatives! Lake Bell joined the cast this week as well, according to The Hollywood Reporter. At some point between those two movies, Brosnan will also find time to squeeze in the dark comedy How to Make Love Like an Englishman, in which he plays a womanizing professor who finally meets his match. His After the Sunset co-star Salma Hayak just signed on this week to play that match (according to Deadline); Jessica Alba and Kristen Scott-Thomas also star. And some time in the future (presumably after Survivor), Brosnan will also star (Deadline reported last week) in I.T., a thriller he's co-producing through his company Irish DreamTime for Voltage Pictures. In that one, Pierce plays a successful book publisher who finds himself the target of a young disgruntled I.T. consultant who uses his tech savvy to ruin the publisher's life. Meanwhile, the busy Brosnan has two other films already wrapped and awaiting release (the aforementioned Love Punch and A Long Way Down, which reunites him with his Die Another Day co-star Rosamund Pike), made a scene-stealing surprise appearance in one of this summer's best comedies (due out on DVD this fall), and starred in the really wonderful Swedish romantic dramady Love Is All You Need, which just came out in America on DVD and Blu-ray. (Seriously, check this one out. It's surprisingly good.) And he found time to star in a Bondian pictorial (pictured) promoting fall 2013 menswear for Hackett of London shot by frequent 007 photographer Terry O'Neill! (That's also worth checking out, as it finally pairs a modern Bond with a modern Bentley, a match I've wanted to see for years.) Whew! That's quite an active schedule. Go Pierce!

Oct 7, 2013

Tradecraft: ABC Developing New Female Spy Series Clandestine

Once again this year, there are a lot of spy pilots flying around the networks these days! (Bear in mind as always with pilots this time of year, few of them will actually be shot, and fewer still will make it to series come next fall.) The latest, according to Deadline, is a female-led spy series at ABC (where the ultimate female-led spy series, Alias, aired for five seasons last decade) from producer Melissa Rosenberg (The AgencyTwilight) and writer Matthew Sand (Ninja Assassin). The trade blog reports that "Clandestine takes a look into the CIA world through the perspective of an unlikely asset: the hard-partying daughter of the American ambassador to the UK. As her work grows more dangerous, she discovers skills and talents no one ever thought she possessed — especially not her father, from whom she is keeping a dark secret." I love the premise! And while I know a lot of spy fans will no doubt roll their eyes at the Twilight connection, bear in mind that Rosenberg is actually an old hand at TV, with producing credits including short-lived spy drama The Agency as well as Dexter, The O.C. and a personal favorite of mine, Hercules: The Legendary Journeys. I'm rooting for this one!

Oct 3, 2013

Trailer for Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit

Well, how do you like that? This makes three Tom Clancy-related posts in a row. (Granted, one of them was relating very sad news.) After sitting tight on it all summer, Paramount has finally begun the publicity push for its Jack Ryan reboot, which the studio hopes will re-launch the iconic Nineties spy franchise for the modern age. Yesterday we saw the poster, and today we have the trailer for Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit.

Well, that was... hm. What was that? It's really hard for me to separate the action from the character, but I get the feeling that if it were a trailer for a new Chris Pine spy movie with no baggage, I'd be really into it. But a Jack Ryan movie? It doesn't really feel like that to me. There's a lot I find appealing in this trailer, but it doesn't have any of the stuff I really associate with that franchise. No techies staring at satellite imagery, no fetishistic beauty shots of military hardware, no political shouting matches. Instead, it looks like someone yelled, "Make a movie with Jack Ryan in Casino Royale. With lots of Bourne stuff, too!" Now, anyone who regularly reads this blog will know that I love Casino Royale, and I love Bourne stuff. So in general I'd have no problem with that. But... it's really not Jack Ryan. Mr. Clark was Jack Ryan's "dark side" in the Clancy novels, and he was the one who took care of this sort of thing. Ryan himself was more cerebral. He was an analyst and a strategist, and that made it more interesting when he did find himself in risky situations. Last year we heard that Paramount planned to develop simultaneous Clark and Ryan franchises, and have Kevin Costner's character as a Nick Fury-like link between the two leading up to them eventually meeting and teaming up, following the Marvel model. But based on this Ryan trailer, I can't imagine that the Clark movie would be different enough to register as its own animal.

But, of course, this is a reboot, and specifically a cinematic reboot. The Bourne of the movies bears very little resemblance to the Bourne of the books, yet the movies became huge hits, so why should Paramount feel anymore beholden to the literary source material than Universal did? I guess the key to enjoying this movie will be to go into it expecting a whole new thing, and to leave all Jack Ryan preconceptions at the door. (Obviously this doesn't work as a prequel to The Hunt for Red October, since that Jack Ryan certainly hadn't been forced to "go operational" years prior!) I didn't like Doug Liman's The Bourne Identity the first time I saw it because I brought too much baggage from my love of the books. While I'd still like to see the book Bourne filmed faithfully one day, I've since learned to enjoy the Matt Damon movies (and enjoy them quite a lot!) for what they are. I will try to bear the same thing in mind when seeing Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit. (Plus, it is pretty cool to see Kevin Costner as some sort of Smiley-type!) As of now, it's scheduled to open Christmas Day.

PS: Also, it's kind of funny that Casino Royale reset not only James Bond but the spy genre at large so thoroughly that whereas after Dr. No the quintessential spy imagery was a sophisticated agent in a suit arriving at an exotic international airport (that's the scene that every imitator took, not the 007's iconic casino introduction), now apparently the quintessential spy imagery is a gritty fight in a men's room.

Oct 2, 2013

Jack Ryan Reboot Poster

Where there is death, there is rebirth. Following today's sad news of author Tom Clancy's passing, Paramount has unveiled the first poster for the new movie that aims to reboot Clancy's signature character, CIA analyst Jack Ryan. As Deadline first reported, the new film is entitled Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit. That doesn't sound remotely like a Clancy title to me, which is too bad. The film is not based on any existing Clancy novel, but is said to find its inspiration in the clues the author provided about Ryan's past in The Hunt for Red October and other books. (Except I'm pretty sure the CIA analyst described in that novel hadn't already been in a situation that required him to carry a firearm in Moscow...)
I'm honestly quite excited for this movie, which is directed by Kenneth Branagh and co-stars Branagh, Kevin Costner and Keira Knightley (what, she doesn't rate a poster mention?), but I have to say I don't like this poster one bit. I suppose the point is to evoke the equally unimpressive campaign for Pine's other big Paramount hit this year, Star Trek Into Darkness? Whatever, it's only a poster. We should get a better sense of what the movie itself will be like when Paramount unleashes the first trailer tomorrow at 7:30 Eastern/4:30 Pacific on Yahoo! I hope the film does well by Tom Clancy's legacy.

R.I.P. Tom Clancy

Numerous outlets, including Deadline and The New York Times, are reporting the death of author Tom Clancy at the age of 66 following a brief illness. Clancy was one of the biggest names in spy fiction—certainly one of the genre’s bestsellers in the Eighties and Nineties. He was also one of the indisputable founding fathers of the modern genre dubbed the “techno-thriller,” well-researched page turners based on cutting edge technological concepts. (The techno-thriller and spy thriller genres often dovetail, as they did in Clancy’s books.) Clancy was the creator of one of the most recognizable spy franchise characters of modern times, CIA analyst Jack Ryan. Ryan first appeared in Clancy’s 1984 Cold War classic The Hunt for Red October, the first work of contemporary fiction ever to be published by the Naval Institute Press. (The initial print run was just 5,000 copies, and in the mid-Nineties, this was one of the most desirable modern first editions out there.) Part of what made the book such a success was its impressively accurate technical details, which won the author many fans among the U.S. military and intelligence establishment. Like Ian Fleming before him, Clancy got a huge boost in sales when an American president endorsed his work. Ronald Reagan told White House reporters that he was losing sleep because he couldn’t put down The Hunt for Red October, calling it “my kind of yarn.”

Red October was followed by other thick Jack Ryan thrillers, including Patriot Games, The Cardinal of the Kremlin (my favorite), Clear and Present Danger and The Sum of All Fears. These giant, daunting literary bricks were such a part of Eighties and Nineties pop culture that it’s impossible to imagine a Waldenbooks or B. Dalton of my childhood without picturing them prominently displayed in the front of the store. They were intrinsic to my own discovery of the spy genre when I was in middle school. Many hundreds of pages long and often weighing more than all my textbooks combined (in hardcover, anyway), each new Clancy book I read was a challenge to be conquered. Yet despite their dense technological details, they moved quickly and (in those days) always proved a rewarding read. The dense technical data was never boring, because Clancy made it exciting! Reading a Clancy novel, I always felt like I was privy to fascinating top secret information about high-tech weaponry and the inner workings of our military and intelligence services. Honestly, learning about submarine warfare and sniper skills and satellite technology was as thrilling and sometimes even as suspenseful as the roller coaster plots that Clancy concocted. (Some of those plots proved harrowingly prescient, particularly terrorists’ use of airliners to attack America in Debt of Honor.) I loved those novels, and I find it hard to believe that now all three of my favorite thriller writers of my youth are dead before their time: Ludlum, Crichton and now Clancy.

Tom Clancy’s cultural impact was not limited to the bestseller lists. He was also a trailblazer in videogames. His second novel, Red Storm Rising (chronicling WWIII), formed the basis for a war game the author was actively involved in developing, and in the Nineties he co-founded his own videogame company, Red Storm Entertainment (subsequently subsumed by Ubisoft). Clancy lent his name and expertise to three extremely successful Ubisoft series, Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six, Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon and Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell. As in his fiction, he insisted on a high level of technical accuracy in these games, and reportedly that realism led to the military actually using some of them in training.

Clancy also made his mark on film and television. The Hunt for Red October was made into a superb movie by John McTiernan in 1990 starring Sean Connery as Soviet sub captain Marko Ramius and Alec Baldwin as Jack Ryan. With James Bond out of commission for half the decade, Jack Ryan became the cinematic spy hero of the Nineties, played by Harrison Ford in two further films (both directed by Philip Noyce), Patriot Games and Clear and Present Danger. The latter Ford film also introduced movie audiences to Clancy’s other primary hero, Black Ops mastermind John Clark, played by Willem Dafoe. The series was rebooted in the early 2000s with Ben Affleck playing a younger Ryan at the start of his career in The Sum of All Fears, and will be rebooted again later this year with Chris Pine playing Ryan at an even earlier point in his career, if that makes sense. I enjoyed the movies (well, except for Sum), but as a teenager felt frustrated that they never seemed to do the books justice. (How could they, cramming that many pages into a standard theatrical running time?) Clancy himself was often the most outspoken critic of the movies based on his books.

Even though miniseries would seem the perfect medium to adapt Clancy’s books, only two were made: Tom Clancy’s OP Center (1995), starring Harry Hamlin, and Tom Clancy’s NetForce (1999), starring Scott Bakula. It was reported in late 2011 that Clancy was working on a new TV series about Homeland Security. I was excited by the prospect, and I hope it might still see the light of day.

The most controversial way in which Clancy impacted the publishing industry was by turning his name into a brand, and that brand into a cottage industry. He lent his name to numerous series of paperback originals (some of which were tied in with videogames or miniseries), including Tom Clancy’s Net Force, Tom Clancy’s Op-Center, Tom Clancy’s Power Plays, and Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell. But despite his name being by far the largest thing on the cover, the actual books were written by other authors. While some of those authors were quite talented in their own right (including James Bond continuation author Raymond Benson), it seemed a bit disingenuous to market their books as something they weren’t. But there’s no arguing with the financial success of the model. While consumers might have the right to gripe, publishers loved the results. Soon, Robert Ludlum, Clive Cussler, James Patterson and others were following the same formula. (It’s proven very lucrative for the Ludlum estate, enabling them to keep publishing new material with the late author’s name splashed across the cover for more than a decade after his death, and will no doubt do the same for Clancy’s heirs.) In later years, Clancy even started turning over his signature Jack Ryan series to ghost writers, co-writing recent novels with Grant Blackwood and Mark Greaney. (There’s much debate among fans over how much co-writing Clancy actually did, as the author’s signature attention to detail certainly dwindled. It certainly seemed as if his heart was no longer in it, even in the last books he wrote on his own.)

Even without his numerous spin-off series, Tom Clancy’s legacy is assured. His early Jack Ryan books are bona fide classics of the genre, and Ryan himself will live on for as long as spy novels are read. This December will see the publication of a new Jack Ryan novel co-wrtitten with Greaney, Command Authority, as well as the long-awaited cinematic reboot of the character in Kenneth Brannagh’s Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit (Deadline’s obituary is the first place I’ve seen that title), starring Chris Pine. (Though there are rumors that Paramount may push the movie to next spring.) But beyond Jack Ryan, Clancy’s impact will be forever felt in the works of new authors and screenwriters he inspired. Like Ian Fleming and John le Carré, Tom Clancy forever changed the genre, and every techno-thriller author to come will owe him a debt of honor.