Paul Greengrass Scotches Bourne 5 Rumours

'It's a figment of someone’s imagination'

As the first Brit to open the BFI London Film Festival since Kevin Macdonald in 2006, Paul Greengrass will be proudly flying the flag at the Opening Gala on October 9 with his true-life thriller Captain Phillips. “A tremendous honour and a real thrill,” is how he described the tribute when Empire caught up with him at the Festival launch.

But, the director cautioned fans of a certain Treadstone operative, the seaborne thriller is probably the closest he'll be coming to making a Bourne movie any time soon - despite the existence of Bourne 5 in the production pipeline and persistent rumours linking Greengrass, and erstwhile co-star Matt Damon, with a return to the franchise.

“I’ve absolutely no idea," he said of the rumours' provenance. "I’m not being funny but, no, that’s just a figment of someone’s imagination.”

Universal publicly dismissed the suggestion of a third Greengrass / Damon collaboration last week, but when, we wondered, was the last time the B-word has come up in serious conversation betweeen director and star? “Quite a while ago," he said. "We might have a laugh about it, but a serious conversation? Not for a long time.”

Given the complexity of franchise politics, Greengrass was understandably circumspect when asked if he harboured a desire to make another Bourne movie. “Um... listen, I loved the Bourne movies," he said. "I loved making them but it’s like anything in life, you’ve got to move on and do different things."

Greengrass's next proud duty will be unveiling Captain Phillips for West End audiences next month. It opens the BFI London Film Festival on October 9, before getting a UK-wide release on October 18. Head to the official London Film Festival website for full programme details.