Dwayne Johnson to Star in Robert Ludlum Thriller ‘The Janson Directive’ for Universal

Studio aims for a multi-film franchise akin to its Ludlum-based “Jason Bourne” series

Last Updated: May 18, 2016 @ 9:08 PM

Dwayne Johnson is attached to star in a movie based on the late Robert Ludlum’s best-selling thriller “The Janson Directive” for Universal, a project the studio foresees as launching a franchise akin to its successful Ludlum-based “Jason Bourne” series.

James Vanderbilt (“Truth”) will adapt the book from a story co-authored with Oscar winner Akiva Goldsman (“Knights of the Roundtable”).

“The Janson Directive” follows a former clandestine operative, now the best private security consultant in the world, who is framed for a horrendous crime and must join forces with the protégé sent to kill him in order to survive.

Vanderbilt will concurrently co-author two more stories that will be adapted into screenplays based on Ludlum titles to tie into the planned movie universe.

Johnson will executive produce alongside Dany Garcia and their company, Seven Bucks Productions, with Tracey Nyberg of Mythology.

Seven Bucks Productions’ Hiram Garcia, Captivate’s Ben Smith and Jeffrey Weiner and Mythology’s James Vanderbilt, Brad Fischer and William Sherak will produce along with Akiva Goldsman.

Captivate is producing this July’s “Jason Bourne,” due in theaters July 29, which returns Matt Damon to the role of the amnesiac super-agent based on Ludlum’s best-sellers.

“‘The Janson Directive’ is classic Robert Ludlum,” Johnson said. “Sharp, edgy and layered storylines. The character is complex, conflicted, bad ass and lethal — I can’t wait to sink my teeth into this and bring him to life.”

“I could not be more excited and humbled to be entrusted with this. I’ve been obsessed with Robert Ludlum ever since I was a kid, and the opportunity to play in this sandbox and create an interconnected universe based on the works of one of the best espionage writers of all time is a dream come true,” Vanderbilt said. “I am so excited to work with Universal, Captivate, and my partners at Mythology on this, and we could not have better partners than Dwayne and Akiva to kick off our universe with!”