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Sunlight And Greengrass
Bourne director makes They Marched Into Sunlight

01 February 2005  |  Written by   

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If your recent past includes spy shenanigans with Jason Bourne, and a reconstruction of the events of Bloody Sunday, it’s only natural that your next step should combine the two threads. You know, mix the high-stakes, international angle of Bourne with the bloody confusion and chaos of conflict on the ground of Bloody Sunday. So it should come as no surprise that Paul Greengrass has signed on for a war movie.

He has signed on to write and direct the adaptation of They Marched Into Sunlight, the Vietnam War narrative by Pullitzer Prize-winning author David Maraniss. The book covers a period in October 1967, and follows very different perspectives on the war. On the one hand, the soldiers of the First Infantry Division are marching into a trap that will leave many dead and more wounded. Back at home in the US, student protesters are planning a demonstration that will bring out the riot police. And in Washington, Lyndon B. Johnson is wondering where it all went wrong (clue: it was when you sent troops into Vietman, LBJ).

The book’s unique appeal lies in this cross-section of three different groups whose lives were affected by the war, but it does make it a complete bugger to bring to the screen. Greengrass, however, already proved his ability to tackle difficult subjects in the aforementioned Bloody Sunday, and in other dramas including The Murder of Stephen Lawrence, and Bourne showed that he isn’t intimidated by big films, so let’s hope he’s the man for the job.

The real question is where he’s going to fit this into his schedule. He’s already due to make Watchmen, as well as another chapter of the adventures of a certain Mr Bourne in The Bourne Ultimatum. Still, we’re sure that, as one of Blighty’s finest, Greengrass can handle the pressure.

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