The Rock expanding movie empire to series of spy thrillers

By James Caldwell, PWTorch assistant editor

The Rock (artist Travis Beaven © PWTorch)

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“The Rock” Dwayne Johnson announced a major movie project on Thursday, as reported by Entertainment Weekly.

Rock and Universal Pictures are collaborating with Captivate Entertainment and Mythology for a series of movies based on the spy novel series “The Janson Directive.”

Johnson will star in the lead role and be executive producer for the movies based on the novel series written by Robert Ludlum.

“The Janson Directive is classic Robert Ludlum. Sharp, edgy and layered storylines. The character is complex, conflicted, badass, and lethal – I can’t wait to sink my teeth into this and bring him to life,” Johnson said in a statement. Johnson joked on Twitter that he’s not quite Matt Damon playing Jason Bourne in the “Bourne” movie series.

Johnson is working with script-writer James Vanderbilt to adapt the novel series to movie form. “I’ve been obsessed with Robert Ludlum ever since I was a kid,” Vanderbilt said in a statement, “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.”

The project is two years in the making and part of Universal looking to join other movie studios creating inter-linked movies that keep people returning to movie theaters to watch the next installment of a series.

It’s also part of Rock wanting to expand his reputation in Hollywood, not wanting to just be the actor who resuscitate franchises, but creates an entire new franchise.

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