Two-time Academy Award® nominee Jeremy Renner-- a performer as comfortable with drama as he is with action, stars in Universal Pictures “The Bourne Legacy” he plays Aaron Cross is one of six agents in a program called Outcome.
Unlike the CIA’s Treadstone, Outcome agents have been developed and trained for use by the Department of Defense. More than assassins, Outcome agents are designed for use in isolated, high-risk, long-term intelligence assignments. The behavioral science that was suggested as the underpinning of the Treadstone agents has been upgraded and advanced, but it’s the shared origins of these two programs that makes Outcome so vulnerable as Bourne’s story becomes public knowledge.
How did this role come to you?
It came to me in a very BOURNE-like way. Someone flew out to Germany where I was shooting HANSEL AND GRETEL. They knocked on my door, handed me a script and said, ‘When you’re done with it, call this number…’ It was very spy-like. So I read it, loved it, and thought I’d be an idiot not to do it.
Did you have any qualms about doing this role given that you know Matt Damon who played Jason Bourne in the previous films?
The only qualm would have been if I was being asked to play Jason Bourne. So, it was really easy because I’m not. Now that the trailers are out you get the idea of what the film is about.
Who is your character, Aaron Cross?
At his basic, Aaron Cross is a guy that wanted to belong. He’s a guy who wants to fit in and be a part of something. He’s completely the opposite of who Jason Bourne was. Bourne was just trying to find out who the hell he was, but this Aaron Cross knows exactly who he is. He knows what he wants to do and that’s being a part of this team.
You have an amazing motorbike chase scene in Manila with Rachel Weisz clinging on for dear life. How did you prepare?
To prepare, I had to get used to that motorcycle. It’s an on-road, off-road bike which is a different way to ride than the street bikes that I’m used to. It’s the opposite of almost everything I’ve ever ridden. I had to get use to that bike and then having someone on the back riding with me. If it was just me, I would have taken a few more risks but when I’m responsible for the person on the back, it’s a different thing. I just had to demonstrate due diligence and get used to that bike as much as I could.
We see you doing a scene where you’re practically walking up a vertical wall. How many takes did you do?
It was a lot of work. That was a fun, tough scene. We had to do that about 20 times or so. It got exhausting. I think they ended up using the second take.
You filmed THE BOURNE LEGACY in several locations including Canada, South Korea and the Philippines. Which was the most memorable location?
I really had a lot of fun in Alberta, Canada just because it was around Christmastime and it was snowing. You don’t really get that in California. It was really beautiful although I hated putting on the beard.
Starring in THE BOURNE LEGACY, did you feel a little like you’re open to comparisons from the past?
No, not really because this film is all tied together. It just expanding on the original concept and continues the story. This film’s story also runs parallel with the story of THE BOURNE ULTIMATUM, which is happening at the same time. It really opened up the parameters and the perspective on what that universe is.
Are you still renovating houses?
Yes. I’m doing one now. It’s been a part of my life for a long time and I don’t plan on giving it up. I really, really enjoy doing it. It’s a tangible thing, one of the few things that I do in life that will still exist after the movies are gone. These are homes and lifestyles that I help provide for people.
Is it hard to part with these houses after you’ve put so much love and care into them? Do you get emotionally attached to them?
It’s like having a dog. You’re not a dog-owner; you don’t own the dog. You provide a nice lifestyle for that dog to live as long as it’s supposed to live, but you don’t own it. To me, it’s the same with children. You don’t own your children. You want to give them the tools to succeed in life. Then they grow up and you give them the other tools to make it through life. You’re done parenting at that point, at least in my eyes. It’s the same thing with a house or anything else. You don’t own anything. You’re just lucky enough to share experiences together.
“The Bourne Legacy” is released and distributed by United International Pictures through Solar Entertainment Corp. Showing on August 8, 2012, Nationwide!