It may have taken a few years, but Dwayne Johnson truly has become a hot Hollywood commodity. In the immediate wake of his jump from professional wrestling to film acting, he was typecast as a Vin Diesel-lite generic action star. But somewhere in the last 3 years, Johnson became one of the most bankable and exciting stars in Tinsel Town. He likely has his work ethic to thank for that, as well as a willingness to play against type at times. The ever-busy star may be about to take on a whole new franchise, according to Variety.
Robert Ludlum’s Jason Bourne books have made Universal a ton of money. Now the studio is looking at one of his other novels to potentially launch a new franchise. Variety reports that they’re looking to launch a trilogy of films based on Ludlum’s The Janson Directive, and that Johnson is the frontrunner to play the lead role in the series which- shockingly- is described as “Bourne-esque.”
“The book follows a former consular ops agent who, after leaving covert operations due to the high number of sanctioned serial killings, goes into business as [a] private security consultant. Teamed with a sharpshooter, Janson only takes assignments that he believes will lead to helping those in need.”
[Description Courtesy of Variety]
If negotiations pan out, this would continue Johnson’s meteoric rise. While he tasted some success in the early years of his career, his stock truly began to rise when he signed on to play smaller roles in larger franchises, like G.I. Joe and Fast & Furious. But with this summer’s Hercules, San Andreas, and now the potential Janson Directive, Johnson is looking to be the primary star in major studio tentpoles again- this time with a much more elevated profile.
Universal is currently looking for writers for The Janson Directive. The studio is said to be quite high on the project.