Chris Pine Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit


Chris Pine Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit

Chris Pine Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit

Cast: Chris Pine, Kevin Costner, Keira Knightley
Director: Kenneth Branagh
Genre: Action, Mystery, Thriller
Rated: PG
Running Time: 105 minutes

Synopsis: Jack Ryan, as a young covert CIA analyst, uncovers a Russian plot to crash the U.S. economy with a terrorist attack.

Shadow Recruit
Release Date: January 17th, 2014

 

 

About The Production

 

'You sold this as an office job." - Jack Ryan

 

Tom Clancy's most iconic character, Jack Ryan, returns to the big screen in this taut suspense thriller. When a global terrorist network is about to be activated, the brilliant CIA analyst (Chris Pine, 'Star Trek") has no choice but to become operational.  Yet when everyone who could stop the coming international mega-disaster has something to lose or something to hide, who can Ryan possibly trust?

 

In the wintry heart of Moscow, a Russian oligarch is about to set off a sophisticated but savage act of financial-based terrorism that could bring down the United States. Meanwhile, on Wall Street, covert CIA recruit Jack Ryan is about to get his very first field assignment - one that will instantly take him from an unheralded desk job to heading so deep into the shadows, he will no longer be sure who is a friend and who is a deadly enemy.  The only thing of which he will be certain is that in this world where all motives are suspect, where secrets and lies abound, every perilous move he makes has world-altering stakes. 

 

'Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit" brings Clancy's Everyman CIA agent – the reluctant spy who entered the annals of popular culture as the scholar who must turn his counter-terrorism theories to action – into the 21st Century.

 

 

Who Is Jack Ryan?

 

Since the master spy novelist Tom Clancy first introduced him in his intense submarine thriller, The Hunt for Red October, and then had him single-handedly foiling a deadly IRA plot in Patriot Games, Jack Ryan has become synonymous with a certain kind of vital, unseen hero.  Just mention Ryan to a Clancy fan and the name instantly conjures up an image of smarts under fire, of unflinching but focused commitment in the face of global intrigue, of a very human man standing up to extraordinary threats.  In the world of espionage, Ryan stood out.  Largely untrained as a spy, but with an intellect to match his boldness, he didn't rely on gadgets or brawn so much as his mind and his gut, becoming an invaluable U.S. intelligence asset by always staying that one essential step ahead of those who would do the nation harm. 

 

With Tom Clancy's 13 Jack Ryan bestsellers and four blockbuster films, Jack Ryan was soon embedded into the very fabric of popular culture, just as the Cold War was shifting into a trickier era of spycraft.  But the filmmakers of 'Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit" felt the beloved and increasingly relevant character should not be relegated to the past. After all, keen analysts like Ryan have since become the essential backbone of our new and more convoluted epoch of wired espionage as agents chase stateless actors and out-of-the-blue terrorist events. That's why the filmmakers were inspired not only to update Ryan's world for today's audiences but to go back his very beginnings, to tell the foundational tale of how he became the man Tom Clancy made iconic. 

 

 'I think with Chris Pine as Jack Ryan, we are really redefining the character," says producer Mace Neufeld, who has been part of the Jack Ryan legacy since 1990 when he produced the very first film featuring the character, 'The Hunt For Red October," which went on to become an influential hit and major award winner.  'Chris and Ken Branagh have given Jack new life." 

This isn't the first time Chris Pine has rebooted a treasured character – he also recently re-envisioned the iconic role of Captain James T. Kirk in J.J. Abrams' acclaimed 'Star Trek" series, which brought the sci-fi classic to a new generation.  But here he would take a renowned character into our present reality, not the future. 

 

Lorenzo Di Bonaventura, the producer known for the blockbuster 'Transformer" series, explains:  'We set out to create a modern origin story for Jack Ryan, so you get to see his path from a student to getting recruited into the CIA to becoming part of world-shattering events for the first time.  You see the growth of his character, how he develops his sense of right and wrong, how he deals with his relationships and how handles all the questions about what it means to put yourself in harm's way.  He's not someone who is a superhero.  But he is someone who, when the times call for it, rises to the occasion – and there is also a lot of thrilling action in this story." 

 

The filmmakers were thrilled to watch a contemporized Jack Ryan become flesh and blood, first in the gripping screenplay by Adam Cozad and David Koepp and then in the performance of Chris Pine and the reality-driven directorial approach of Kenneth Branagh.  'The result is a kind of first voyage of discovery for Jack, a man who never really expected to become a field agent, and together, Kenneth Branagh and Chris Pine created their own take on Jack Ryan that is fun and contemporary," says producer David Barron, known for his work on the 'Harry Potter" franchise. 

 

Producer Mark Vahradian, Di Bonaventura's on 'Transformers" and others, notes that as the project developed, a cornerstone became 'inventing a fresh story while also staying true to the mythology as Tom Clancy created it." 

 

That meant exploring why Ryan remains so uniquely appealing among the multitudes of literary and cinematic spies.  'He carves out his own space in the spy world," Mark Vahradian explains.  'He's more of an Everyman kind of spy.  He's not a trained killer.  He represents someone who gets tapped on the shoulder and is asked -how far are you willing to go to do something necessary for your country?' That's what makes him so interesting – that inside he's one of us." 

 

Screenwriters Adam Cozad, who makes his debut with the film, and David Koepp - whose action-thrillers range from 'Premium Rush" and 'Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull" to 'Mission: Impossible" and 'Jurassic Park" - produced a script that underlines the idea of an ordinary man pushed to find in himself a paragon of courage and devotion that Tom Clancy honed so deftly. At the same time, they crafted an original, high-tension story that delves into the most current of dangers:  terrorism creeping into financial realms, with the potential to unleash unprecedented worldwide chaos.  

 

When Kenneth Branagh agreed to come on board not only as the film's director but also as its complicated villain, Viktor Cherevin, he ignited the project.  The Academy Award® nominated actor and director was just coming off directing the superhero tale 'Thor," and was ready to dive into yet another new arena with his first foray into global espionage. 

 

Kenneth Branagh's diverse background as one of the world's pre-eminent Shakespeareans mixed with his penchant for briskly-paced, smart thrillers seemed a lock both with the film's suspense and its overarching themes of power, responsibility and trust.

 

"One of the hardest things to do in film is to create massive scale while also holding onto the humanity of the characters.  Kenneth Branagh has that ability and he never lets go of either those things through the whole movie," says Di Bonaventura.

 

Adds Neufeld:  'Kenneth Branagh came in having read all of the Clancy books and he was just tremendously prepared.  He also knows exactly how to talk to other actors.  And he's tireless. There's more action in this film than in any of the previous Ryan films.  It's still very much a thriller but Kenneth Branagh imagined some very big, exciting sequences."    

 

For Kenneth Branagh, the attraction began with the script.  'It was nerve-jangling," he recalls of his first read.  'It was an action thriller, but more than that, it carried an emotional charge that I was surprised by.  You really care about Jack Ryan and he's such a distinctive kind of character." 

 

Kenneth Branagh had already read a few of the books, but he soon tucked into all 13 of Tom Clancy's novels involving Ryan, immersing himself fully in Ryan's history and personality.  'I enjoyed the paradox of Ryan," he says.  'He's the best and the brightest, he has this brilliant analytical mind, and yet he's also somewhat reluctant as a CIA man.  He has these vulnerable, regular guy qualities that make him remarkably empathetic."

 

He was especially excited to take Ryan into high-tech areas of intelligence that are emerging as key to safeguarding the future at this very moment in time.  Perhaps nowhere is the U.S. more open to devastating attack that at the heart of a 24/7 wired financial system that could, potentially, be infiltrated without anyone seeing it coming.  Kenneth Branagh was intrigued that this is where Ryan's unique skills lie:  in his ability to ferret out violent plots that are hidden deep inside computer networks until they are put into motion.  'With his Wall Street background, Jack can analyse an entire inter-related global financial network and understand where it might be weak and cause a catastrophe," Kenneth Branagh explains. 

 

Yet for all his brilliance with technology, and all his analytical insight, Ryan is wholly unprepared for the extreme personal threats - and even more so, the dire personal doubts - he'll face once he goes fully operational.  This equally fascinated Kenneth Branagh. 

 

'As Jack's story unfolds, it becomes about how a man like Jack handles the secrets and lies that are at the heart of leading a covert life," says the director.  'He can't even tell his fiancée with whom he lives what he does.  So we go on this personal journey with Jack as he figures out the right ways to do what he knows has to be done." 

 

That journey took Kenneth Branagh and the production from New York to Moscow to London and into his most intricately choreographed action sequences to date.   He relished the experience.  'Creating the landscape of a global thriller was great fun for me," he concludes.  'Most of all, what we wanted to do with the filmmaking was put the audience in the very center of it, so that you feel like what's happening to Jack is happening right in the moment." 

 

Recruiting Chris Pine

 

The Jack Ryan of 'Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit" stays true to the essential Tom Clancy lore – that of a very human man pushed to his edges by the most critical global situations - while bringing the character hurtling into the CIA of our current world.  To fuse the character's classic and modern qualities into one performance, the filmmakers looked for an actor who had plenty of both.  They found exactly that mix in Chris Pine. 

 

'Chris Pine is a real thinking actor who has that analytical quality," comments Kenneth Branagh.  'He's someone who you can feel moment to moment questioning what's real and truthful and accurate.  It was crucial to the film to have someone like Chris Pine - who is so comfortable in his own skin, who is effortlessly smart but equally sexy and charismatic -- take the role. Chris Pine also has a wonderful self-deprecatory side; he has the ability to laugh at himself and he brings that ability to the character, and to the sometimes humorously confusing situation Jack finds himself in, which makes him even more engaging."

 

Adds Lorenzo Di Bonaventura:  'Chris Pine, as a person, is already very analytical, very inquisitive, always poking at what is right, what is wrong, what is true?  I think he's naturally that way and Jack Ryan is also naturally that kind of guy so they are a great match. Chris Pine was also incredibly brave in terms of doing his own stunts and really putting himself out there.  He showed 100% commitment to the character."  

 

For Chris Pine, the draw that sparked that kind of commitment was the chance to create a more down-to-earth view of a real-life 'secret agent."  He loved the idea of letting the audience see Ryan's uncertainty, fear and even his disbelief as he undergoes his first initiation into the extreme hazards of the job. 

 

'In the landscape of action heroes, Jack is different," the actor notes. 'He's someone you might know in your regular life.  He's a very smart guy, but now, he's put in this situation where he doesn't really know what he should do, where he has to really think on his feet in a way he never has had to before."

 

Chris Pine also came to the role with a lot of respect for all the positive qualities Tom Clancy had imbued into the character.  'One of the things that I think has made him such an interesting and lasting character is that Jack Ryan is a really decent man," says Chris Pine.  'There's a kind of goodness to his soul – so he's the kind of man you want to see learn to take the lead."   

 

In a way, says Chris Pine, Ryan is a mirror image to the other famous character he plays on screen:  the out-sized Captain Kirk. 'Kirk is brash and arrogant and it's because of those faults that he learns about selflessness. Jack, on the other hand, comes into this mission as a very grounded, centered man," he observes.  'But the one thing Jack doesn't know - like all of us - is when it comes down to this urgent situation... does he really have what it takes or not?" 

 

To prepare to play Ryan, Chris Pine explored all the threads that make up his history.  He spent time talking in depth with military veterans, he toured the London School of Economics, he dove into the mechanics of banking, trading and derivatives, and he even got to know a real-life Compliance Officer, the job which serves as Ryan's cover. 

 

Equally key to his performance was honing in on Jack's thorny relationship with the woman he wants to marry yet can't tell the truth, his fiancée Cathy.  'Jack is kind of a loner, yet the one strong connection he has is with this woman," he observes.  'I think he sees in Cathy a kindred spirit, and in the course of the story, she proves to have as much backbone and courage as he does." 

 

Throughout, Chris Pine had the confidence that Branagh would bring all of these elements to the fore. 'Kenneth Branagh is a director who does such incredible preparation that when he walks onto the set there is just no doubt about what he wants to achieve," he comments.  'I've never done a film that moved as fast as this one, yet Kenneth Branagh always had it going on.  And then he would jump with the greatest ease from behind the camera to in front of it." 

 

Kenneth Branagh felt equally excited about working with Chris Pine.  'Chris Pine came in and really created the sense of Jack Ryan as someone who would rather be sitting reading a book on history than in Moscow on the run for his life – and then he showed him finding his depth," summarises the director. 

 

The Handler

 

The man who brings Jack Ryan into the CIA and shepherds him into an assignment that will test Ryan to the core is himself a bit of a cipher – a veteran agent who knows how to play the game.  This is Thomas Harper, who is portrayed by Academy Award®-winning filmmaker and actor Kevin Costner, making a much-anticipated return to the big screen after the Emmy-winning success of television's 'The Hatfields and McCoys." 

 

Ironically, Kevin Costner had originally been offered the role of Jack Ryan in 'The Hunt For Red October," but turned it down due in order to devote himself fully to his Oscar®-winning epic 'Dances With Wolves." 

 

Kenneth Branagh was gratified by Kevin Costner's interest in revisiting the story in this new incarnation and in the crucial role of Ryan's shrewd handler.  'It's a part that seems tailor made for Kevin Costner in a sense," says the director.  'Harper is a senior figure in the CIA and Kevin Costner plays him with an effortless grace.  He brings the cumulative force of all the roles he's played with him – so there's also this sense of Americana to him that goes beyond the words on the page.  And meanwhile, he's just a terrific actor."

 

Chris Pine, a long-time fan of Kevin Costner's work on both sides of the camera, was especially exhilarated by the choice.  'There's a certain command that a big movie star and a great American director like Kevin has when he walks onto a set," he muses.  'Working with him was like taking a mini Master Class.  And Harper becomes such an important anchor for Jack - constantly reminding Jack who he is and why he picked him for this mission in the first place." 

 

For Kevin Costner, the fact that this Jack Ryan story starts at the very beginning of his evolution was part of the appeal.  'The spy movie is a cinematic staple but often you just land in the movie and you don't see what the beginnings are," he notes.  'So this was a chance to ask, -how did that happen?' -How did this CIA agent begin?'"

 

Harper plays a major part in Ryan's origins, but Kevin Costner perceives him as seeing his relationship with Jack as just one piece of the bigger picture of protecting the country.  'You could reference him as a mentor to Jack, but I don't think Harper or Jack sees it that way," he observes.  'To Harper, Jack is a guy under his supervision – he knows his skill set and it's vital to him that he does well.  Jack starts out as more of a financial guy, a Ph.D. – I mean, he doesn't even have a gun when he gets to Moscow.  But Harper also knows that Jack has this very resourceful quality inside him." 

 

The push-and-pull between Kevin Costner and Chris Pine as Harper and Ryan became palpable on set.  Says producer David Barron:  'With Chris Pine you have a young movie star and with Kevin you have a well-established movie star and putting the two together just worked like gangbusters.  We felt extraordinarily lucky to have them."   

 

Adds Lorenzo Di Bonaventura, who has worked numerous times with Kevin Costner:  'I got the chance to watch Kevin Costner do a lot of the movies that were such great successes in the 90s and I think what you always see with him is this great sense of mission, this idea that his characters always know what they want to do and why they want do it.  His sense of commitment is so utter that you will follow along on any ride with him.  And what's great about this role is that Harper is an experienced CIA agent suddenly thrust together with two novices in Jack and Cathy who really are in way over their heads – and it's his job to make sure they are up to this task.  Kevin Costner has that sense of command that you believe he can guide these two people through this incredible situation."

 

Enemies And Lovers

 

In Moscow, Jack Ryan confronts one of the diverse, modern faces of terrorism: a powerful, private Russian banker ready to put into motion a terrifying global plot to quench his personal thirst for vengeance.  Taking the role of the ingeneious but nefarious Viktor Cherevin is the film's director, Kenneth Branagh, who has not acted in a film he directed for the last 13 years, but took on the fierce intellect of Cherevin with gusto. 

 

'It sort of naturally evolved that I would take the role of Cherevin," Kenneth Branagh recalls.  'I was really fascinated by the character and it was not too big of a role that it would challenge me in the way of playing something, say, as big as Hamlet while also directing.  I thought it could be wonderful fun to play this dark character who is something of a maverick and who is fueled by his own personal tragedy.  He's one of those very contained fellows who you don't want to cross, which makes him quite interesting as an actor." 

 

It is Cherevin's nationalist identity and personal vendetta against the United States that impel him to knit together a sleeper network of operatives, skilled in both finance and explosives, in a plot that might have gone undetected, were it not for Jack Ryan.   But it is not only his dark genius that makes the character intriguing – it is also his sophisticated charm, which he uses on Jack and ultimately, his fiancée.

 

'Viktor can be terrifyingly charming," Kenneth Branagh admits, 'but he is also ruthless.  He can very coldly decide to unleash his demons and then he will do whatever he deems is necessary." 

 

The director carefully balanced his acting work with guiding the film.  'I was very particular about which days I would do my scenes," he explains.  'I like to be pragmatic about where I can have the most energy and focus, without abandoning other people's needs.   The last thing you want to do is let anyone down." 

 

Preparation was key. 'In order to get to the point with a role where it can catch fire, I've always felt intensive preparation is the best way," he says.  In this case, that meant diving into Russian history, poetry and speech patterns.  'It was hard work to find Viktor's particular Russian accent," he notes.  'There are many kinds of Moscow accents, so it started with months and months of watching clips from Russian television and listening to Russian books-on-tape in the car to just get into the feeling of that landscape of sounds.  Then I worked with a Russian language expert and a dialect person.  In the end, it was all about trying to find the music that was right for the role – particularly in moments when Viktor is being, as my American friends like to say, bad-ass."

 

That relentless quality came across loud and clear on the set, as did the more lyrical and philosophical side of the character.  'I think Kenneth Branagh really enjoyed playing Cherevin," muses producer Mark Vahradian.  'He could have just played a stock villain but he hasn't done that at all.  He's taken it entirely in the other direction, with a man who has a kind of poetic sensibility, who wants to convey to the world what it means to him to be Russian.  Interestingly, when we were doing research, we found that a lot of people say that Russian spies talk like poets.  They are a very unique, highly educated breed."

 

Cherevin also reflects back some of Jack Ryan's qualities, but in a twisted sense, notes Di Bonaventura.  'They are not exactly two sides to the same coin, but there is an interesting link between them because Cherevin believes absolutely that what he is doing is right and Jack believes absolutely that what he is doing is right, so you have these two characters with strong but opposing convictions," the producer summarises. 

 

For Jack Ryan, Cherevin is only part of the problem he faces in Moscow.  He has long kept his CIA status secret from the woman he loves – pediatric eye surgeon Cathy - but when she decides to show up unannounced in Russia as a surprise, Jack must decide how much he can tell her... and just how far he can put her own life in danger. 

 

Taking on Cathy's complexity is Keira Knightley, the Academy Award®-nominated English actress known to audiences as Elizabeth Swann in the 'Pirates of the Caribbean" series and Elizabeth Bennet in 'Pride & Prejudice." 

 

'Keira Knightly brings intelligence, beauty and a sense of Cathy being a real equal to Jack," comments Kenneth Branagh.  'Jack's assignment in Moscow is a crisis point in their relationship.  There are confusions and misapprehensions between them, all of which needed to be played in a grown-up, intelligent way by two people who could also convey they are passionately attracted to one another.  We found there was great chemistry between Chris Pine and Keira Knightly. ' 

 

'Keira Knightly's got a really quick intelligence that makes her incredibly appealing," says Chris Pine of Keira Knightley.

 

Keria Knightley enjoyed that Cathy might start out looking like a typical, peripheral love interest but soon comes into the very center of the story, becoming a vital part of Jack's strategy to infiltrate Cherevin's plans.  'She is suddenly right in the middle of the whole operation," Keira Knightley notes.  'She's very much like Jack in that she unexpectedly finds herself in this whole new situation facing a man who wants to end the world as we know it." 

 

She was especially excited to dive into this situation with Kenneth Branagh at the helm.  'Thrillers require really good storytellers and Kenneth Branagh is very, very good at storytelling, at building suspense through the performances and the scenes," she says.  'He really understands cinema and how to create something visually extraordinary, but he is also meticulous about the details." 

 

Once on the set she also found a rich vein to mine in her rapport with Chris Pine.  'Chris Pine brings a humanity to Jack as a man who is struggling with a dual identity," Keira Knightley observes, 'and also struggling with not being able to tell the person he loves most what he is doing or why.  That makes the character, and our interactions, really interesting."

 

When Cathy agrees to help keep Cherevin distracted during a formal dinner, things get even more interesting.  Keira Knightley says part of the fun was watching Kenneth Branagh as Cherevin attempts to seduce her character, then suddenly turns coldly vicious on her.  'Kenneth Branagh is a wonderful actor," she says.  'But he also makes for a very villainous villain and Cathy has to try to meet him on equal ground."

 

The filmmakers were all impressed with the realism Keira Knightley brought to the role.  'Cathy is a pretty challenging character, but she's perfect for someone of Keira's capabilities," says Vahradian.  'She and Chris Pine take you into that moment in a relationship when you start to wonder if you really know that person sitting across from you – only in their case it's so much more heightened because there's this whole other level of deceit going on." 

 

A Global Chase

 

Jack Ryan's journey in 'Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit" takes him on a global trek from the increasingly tech-driven corridors of Wall Street to the 'New Moscow," which has been busily trying remaking its image into that of a major economic hub, erecting a high-rise financial district full of glittering skyscrapers.  The production followed that journey, shooting exteriors amidst the iconic Manhattan streets and skyline and the colorful onion domes of Moscow, then heading for London and Liverpool, where the heart of Jack Ryan's world was created on soundstages and carefully crafted locations. 

 

Kenneth Branagh assembled a crack technical team to pull off the large-scale production including cinematographer Haris Zambarloukos, who worked with him on 'Thor" and 'Sleuth"; production designer Andrew Laws ('Yes Man"); costume designer Jill Taylor ('My Week With Marilyn," 'Match Point"); and Academy Award® winning editor Martin Walsh ('Wrath of the Titans," 'V for Vendetta," 'Chicago"). 

 

Rather than heading into the sleek, glam fantasy realms of most fictional secret agents, Zambarloukos worked with Kenneth Branagh to forge a more rough-hewn realism, opting to shoot in 35mm anamorphic and echoing the graphic, photojournalistic look of 70s thrillers. 

 

'We shot with three cameras most of the time and we often shot without rehearsal," Kenneth Branagh explains of the film's look.  'All of this was to buy a sort of inbuilt roughness, if you like, an edge that I really liked about the script.  I didn't want the feeling of the film to ever get too smooth.  I wanted things to kick off in a way that the audience is asked to keep up with the pace of the story in an enjoyable way – and to join Jack on an emotional journey where you're never quite settled, where you always have that feeling of fear and adrenaline.  So we shot the film in a way that was led by those instincts."

 

Designer Laws also dove into creating an unsettling atmosphere for Jack, working both with renovated locations and building his own sets from the ground up in London's legendary Pinewood Studios (where the film also shot on the famed '007 Stage").

Laws was initially draw to the project by its emphasis on character within the thrills of an espionage mission.  'As a designer, I really like to work from character and there was a lot of meat here in terms of who these characters are and what that meant for the environments we could create," he says.  'And since the film goes from New York to Moscow, we had some great opportunities to create some pretty exciting things." 

 

In concert with Kenneth Branagh's approach, Laws targeted a strong realism in the design.  'The biggest driving force behind the overall concept for the film was to keep everything grounded," Laws explains.  'We wanted a very real world because Jack Ryan was created to be a very relatable character, whose environments are something we are familiar with and recognise.  It's the extraordinary things he does in those ordinary environments that make him exciting.  So we went for authenticity everywhere, from the Wall Stret trading floor where he works to the apartment that he shares with Cathy."

 

Laws designed the apartment to reflect a couple who have not quite jumped into the full partnership of married life despite a deep emotional reliance on one another.  'Designing the apartment was interesting, because we felt at this stage of things, Jack and Cathy are the kind of people who each still have separate lives, even though they live together.  So there is some of his stuff over here and some of her stuff over there – and you get the subtext of something that is a bit unfinished," he explicates.  'At the same time, there's nothing pretentious about the way Jack and Cathy live.  They're successful people but their stuff is eclectic, very real and textured." 

 

Also fun for Laws was showing the dynamism of a changing Moscow in a way that has rarely been seen on screen.  'There's a lot about Moscow right now that I think people outside the city don't know," he points out, mentioning the city's new International Business Center, a lavish metropolis still under construction combining posh financial towers, living spaces and entertainment centers.  'There's a lot of movement and a lot of new development going on and when Jack gets there, we wanted it to feel very unexpected."

 

Laws created Cherevin's ambition-filled offices as an imaginary 80-story structure in the the heart of the International Business Center.  'Using a building in London and post-production visual effects we were able create something with a grandeur and glory very much like what is currently being built in Moscow's new financial district," says David Barron.  'It's very glossy and sophisticated and it really befits Cherevin." 

 

The entire project was an enormous undertaking for Laws, but he says that Kenneth Branagh's careful management made it all possible.  'This film was a great experience, despite being a big challenge," he comments.  'It was a very intense pace, especially since we were shooting with three cameras.  If we hadn't had somebody at the helm that was as quick thinking and skilled as Ken I think it would have been very difficult.  It was great to work with him and to always see the captain of the ship putting in the same amount of work and devotion as we all were." 

 

Says Mace Neufeld of Laws' work:  'Andrew has done a fantastic, tireless job, and everything that he showed us in his illustrations was there when we walked on the set.  We'd seen the pictures but walking into, for instance, the Cherevin offices was just a stunning experience for us.  It was more real than we ever imagined it could be." 

 

In creating the film's action, which is seamlessly integrated into the story, Kenneth Branaghh worked with famed British stunt coordinator Vic Armstrong, with whom he also worked on 'Thor."  Armstrong helped to pull off one of the film's most breathless sequences, as Jack Ryan's trip to Moscow gets off to a shocking start with an almost immediate attack on his life.

 

'Vic was an integral part of the production," says Vahradian.  'He brings an incredible energy to the set and a can-do attitude.  He was always able to achieve e the stunts to the camerawork to the performances, all help to add up to an atmosphere that hearkens back to what people have long loved about Tom Clancy as an author: that distinctive blend of technical realism, authentic geopolitics and razor-sharp suspense. 

 

'The idea behind the whole film was to have the audience completely drawn into Jack Ryan's world, which is a lot like our world, but with layers of uncertainty and deceit," says Kenneth Branagh.  'It's not just a tale of spies and cool action – there's a different kind of hue to who Jack Ryan is, and who he will become, and that's what I hope we get at in this movie." 

 

Shadow Recruit
Release Date: January 17th, 2014


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