Dwayne Johnson wants all the franchises! He’s already muscled into Fast & Furious and GI Joe, and this summer’s Hercules has plenty of sequel potential. That’s not enough for him though, as Variety reports that Universal Pictures is in early talks with Johnson to star in their adaptation of Robert Ludlum’s novel The Janson Directive.
The studio has been planning a movie adaptation for several years, but while John Hlavin (Underworld Awakening, Risk) was hired to write a script back in 2001, the movie got trapped in development hell. Now Universal is seeking writers to start over, writing specifically for Dwayne Johnson, he will also produce.
The novel, which was published a year after Ludlum’s death in 2001, centres on Paul Janson, a former Navy SEAL and spy for the government agency Consular Operations. Now he makes his living as a security consultant, and takes on a job to rescue a prominent civilian. Things go south when Janson is targeted for assassination, and he follows the clues which uncover a massive conspiracy.
Inevitably, Universal wants this to be a Jason Bourne-esque franchise, hoping that the Ludlum connection can help them catch lightning in a bottle twice.