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Matt Damon Talks The Bourne Ultimatum

Published July 30, 2007 in Movie Interviews
By Fred Topel | Images property of Universal Pictures.
The Bourne Ultimatum Poster The Bourne Ultimatum
Sometimes if you're really lucky, you'll get that perfect movie audience that gets into the sense of community but doesn't spoil the experience with rudeness. At the press screening for The Bourne Ultimatum, there must have been just the right combination of folks. They cheered for Jason Bourne's ass kicking fight scenes and cool lines, but never interrupted the film. Star Matt Damon was happy to be such a crowd pleaser.

Matt Damon on The Bourne Ultimatum


"It feels so good I can’t even tell you," said Damon. "In fact, you guys were the second audience to see the movie, so none of us have seen it with an audience. So two nights ago, when the first press screening happened, we were all getting Blackberried during the movie, ‘They’re cheering at Waterloo,’ because we didn’t know. We came so down to the wire, as we always do on these Bourne movies, that we didn’t even get a test in. So two audiences have seen the movie, of which you guys are the second. Last night we were at dinner, we got the Blackberries all started going off at the same time, and we heard that it was a crowd pleaser again. It was Paul [Greengrass] and George Nolfi, the writer, and me and Joan [Allen] and David Strathairn and Julia [Stiles] so we just told [the publicist] to expect a hung over group coming in the next day, because that’s when the champagne came out."

Some of those stellar action sequences include a rooftop chase in Tangier. "I always liked the Tangier sequence and the running along the roof because it’s just Bourne absolutely a hundred miles an hour flat out, and I always liked him grabbing the things, all the things we came up with when we were on the real location, that’s the fun stuff, because you get a bunch of guys together and you’re going, ‘Alright, what would be the smart thing to do here?’ And we’d kind of figure out those sequences, and when they cut them together and they actually work it’s really a good feeling."

That chase ends with a fight scene against Bourne's fastest and toughest opponent yet. "Joey, the other actor, the guy that I'm fighting, is like 23 years old. The first movie came out and he was in high school. And so he was so happy. He was like, 'Mate, I'm in a Bourne fight, this is great!' And he is in really good shape, and he's already like a much better athlete than me. So I was like, 'Oh, man, Joey, you're killing me! You gotta slow down.' And so I think it took probably a couple extra days. You know, it probably cost the studio a couple extra days because I'm a little older now. He just was so excited, and I couldn't possibly defend myself against him. So I'd be like, 'Dude, just like three moves at a time. Come on.' So he was a good sport about it though. He did a great job."



Another crowd pleasing sequence is a tactical chase through Waterloo station in London. "Paul came up with Waterloo, that was all Paul’s design and what would it be like to have a guy leading a complete novice through, to try to elude. That was all Paul and I love that sequence too."

Finally, Bourne does learn the truth about his real identity. "We always kind of had a feeling about kind of where the Bourne character came from, and that he would have been trained, that he would have had a military background. Presumably he was tapped from one of these programs as a good candidate and showed language skills. We had a kind of a loose idea of what that backstory was. We didn't want to pin anything too far down because obviously making all three movies, we never really knew. But we definitely knew enough that I could do all the physical stuff and get ready so that the character was kind of, hopefully, believable."

The Bourne Ultimatum opens to theaters on August 3rd.

For the trailer, stills and more movie info, head over to The Bourne Ultimatum Movie Page.
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Compiled By (Sources)
Fred Topel
Sources: Images property of Universal Pictures.
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