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Kenneth Branagh Discusses Playing 'Great Anti-Thesis' Villain in 'Jack Ryan' Movie

July 23, 2012, 7:06 am GMT

Branagh, who also directs the novel-adapted film, shares some updates on the long-gestating project as stating that the filming will start in September and 'we'll be shooting through until Christmas.'

Kenneth Branagh

It's been a while since fans last heard about Kenneth Branagh's "Jack Ryan" movie project. Letting movie lovers know that the long-gestating project is still in the works, Branagh took some time to share some updates on the film while revealing that he would tackle the villainous role in his upcoming directorial stint.

Speaking of his role in it, the Irish star told Collider, "I don't tend to think of him as a villain, but if you're playing a villain, you don't think of him as a villain. You just think, 'My Guy.' " He added, "The character is a great anti-thesis, but it isn't as simple as that. It's great to see a character in this film with Jack Ryan. It's just a very strong, very interesting, complicated, complex character. When the project first came my way, it was really to do that."

Weighing in on his double duty as actor and director for the project, the "Thor" helmer explained, "I had a long time to think about that prospect, before actually eventually having them ask me to direct it. And then, we put aside the issue of me being in it for awhile 'cause there were so many other things to deal with. Literally, months later, Paramount said, 'Well, do you think you might?' and I said, 'Yeah, I think I'd like to'."

The "Jack Ryan" project has long been put on a hold reportedly due to creative differences between Paramount execs, lead actor Chris Pine and producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura. Making sure that the project would kick off production soon, Branagh stated, "We start shooting in the beginning of September, and we'll be shooting through until Christmas."

Branagh signed on to the untitled Jack Ryan project as a replacement for director Jack Bender. Before exiting the project, it was rumored that Bender was tired of the endless disagreements among the three parties over the direction of the film.

Words were, Pine wanted to make it a "character-driven espionage movie," while di Bonaventura wanted it to be simply an action film. On the other hand, Paramount execs wanted to develop a thriller. Now that Branagh is on board to shepherd the film, he claimed that he will make it "a very fast-paced, very contemporary, very action-driven thriller."

The long-awaited movie is an adaptation of Tom Clancy's famous novel series, which follow Ryan in his 20s when he came out of the Marines to work in the finance world. After Bender left the project, the plot details of the upcoming film are still kept secret.

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