Fresh from playing James T. Kirk in this spring’s Star Trek Into Darkness, Chris Pine tackles the action thriller Jack Ryan, portraying the title character, a former Marine turned covert CIA analyst. Pine is the fourth actor to play Ryan, who originated in the pages of Tom Clancy’s novels. Pine follows in the footsteps of Alec Baldwin, Harrison Ford and Ben Affleck, each of whom previously played Ryan on the big screen.
In the latest installment, Ryan uncovers a plot by the Russians to crash the U.S. economy by devaluing American currency. The Russian villains might give the impression that this film is a retro-Cold War thriller, but the series has reportedly been updated to the post-9/11 era. Another difference between this drama and its predecessors is that Pine’s version of Ryan will be younger, and possibly cooler.
Kenneth Branagh, who is directing the film, will also star as the villain Viktor Cherevin. The cast features Keira Knightley as Jack’s wife Cathy and Kevin Costner in the part of William Harper, who recruits and mentors Jack.
Although the characters were created by Clancy, the story for this new film was not adapted from any of his novels. The screenplay was written by newcomer Adam Cozad and David Koepp, whose résumé includes 2009’s Angels & Demons.
Ryan has remained a popular character for more than 20 years. Pine may have hit upon the hero’s appeal in recent interviews, when he pointed out that Ryan is an everyman to whom audiences can relate.
Jack Ryan will premiere on Christmas Day.