Reports of Paul Greengrass jumping ship on Bourne 4 bounced around the internet yesterday, and today BFDealMemo has Greengrass’ official non-statement/statement via Universal:

You won’t find a more devoted supporter of the Bourne franchise than me. I will always be grateful to have been the caretaker to Jason Bourne over the course of The Bourne Supremacy and The Bourne Ultimatum. I’m very proud of those films and feel they express everything I most passionately believe about the possibility of making quality movies in the mainstream. My decision to not return a third time as director is simply about feeling the call for a different challenge. There’s been no disagreement with Universal Pictures. The opportunity to work with the Bourne family again is a difficult thing to pass up, but we have discussed this together and they have been incredibly understanding and supportive. I’ve been lucky enough to have made four films for Universal, and our relationship continues. Jason Bourne existed before me and will continue, and I hope to remain involved in some capacity as the series moves on.

I’m sure fans of the series and fans of Greengrass are disappointed, but I have to admit I couldn’t really care less. To the extent I like Greengrass (and I do like him though his shakey-cam aesthetic has gotten tiresome), I’d just as soon see him plow newer fields. He made his mark on two Jason Bourne movies. Let’s see what else he’s got (besides Green Zone).

As for the Bourne series on its own, it’s time for some new blood. It has carved out a niche providing serious, adult, action-entertainment and in the process forced the stale James Bond franchise to pick up its game. Now let’s see if someone with fresh ideas can take it to a new level.

I can already hear the unimaginative murmuring around the internet begging for Neill Blomkamp to take over…

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