Tom Cruise back in the espionage game

Harrison Ford in Clear and Present DangerAccording to Variety, Phillip Noyce is currently in negotiations to direct the spy film Edwin A. Salt, which was written by Kurt Wimmer (Street Kings, The Thomas Crown Affair, The Recruit) as a possible star vehicle for Tom Cruise. Columbia Pictures has been handling development on the project with an eye towards Cruise.

Noyce has the depth of experience to handle this type of film, having delivered the goods on film like Patriot Games, Clear and Present Danger (pictured), and what I thought was a delicious love story, The Saint. More recently, Noyce took on the political drama Catch a Fire, which starred Derek Luke. “Fire” was also one of the last films Anthony Minghella worked on as a producer.

Apparently Noyce and Cruise were mentioned for Warner Brothers’ drama The 28th Amendment, but recently shifted focus to “Salt”. The film will follow Cruise as a CIA officer accused by a Russian defector of being a sleeper agent for the Kremlin. He must elude capture long enough to clear his name. Sounds a bit like Minority Report, but with Noyce at the helm a deeply entangled story could definitely emerge.

Cruise has stayed with “Salt” as Wimmer wrote script drafts for attached directors Terry George (Hotel Rwanda, Reservation Road) and then Peter Berg (Friday Night Lights, The Kingdom, Hancock) before each left the project.

Film Fetish Trivia: Phillip Noyce directed the 1989 cult favorite action film Blind Fury, starring Rutger Hauer as Nick Parker, a blind Vietnam vet trained in the ancient ways of Asian swordplay, who comes to America and helps to rescue the son of a fellow soldier.

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