The Bourne Supremacy (film)

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The Bourne Supremacy
Theatrical release poster
Directed byPaul Greengrass
Screenplay byTony Gilroy
Based onThe Bourne Supremacy
by Robert Ludlum
Produced by
CinematographyOliver Wood
Edited by
Music byJohn Powell
Distributed byUniversal Pictures
Release date
  • July 23, 2004 (2004-07-23)
Running time
108 minutes
CountriesUnited States
Budget$75 million[2]
Box office$290.6 million[2]

The Bourne Supremacy is a 2004 action-thriller film featuring Robert Ludlum's Jason Bourne character. Although it takes the name of the second Bourne novel (1986), its plot is entirely different. The film was directed by Paul Greengrass from a screenplay by Tony Gilroy. It is the second installment in the Jason Bourne film series and sequel to The Bourne Identity (2002).

The Bourne Supremacy continues the story of Jason Bourne, a former CIA assassin suffering from psychogenic amnesia.[3] Bourne is portrayed by Matt Damon. The film focuses on his attempt to learn more of his past as he is once more enveloped in a conspiracy involving the CIA and Operation Treadstone. Actors Brian Cox, and Julia Stiles reprise their roles as Ward Abbott, and Nicky Parsons, respectively. Joan Allen joins the cast as Deputy Director and Task Force Chief, Pamela Landy.

Universal Pictures released the film to theaters in the United States on July 23, 2004, to positive reviews and commercial success, grossing $290 million on a $75 million budget. The film was followed by The Bourne Ultimatum (2007), The Bourne Legacy (2012), and Jason Bourne (2016).


Jason Bourne and Marie Kreutz are living in Goa, India. Bourne, who is still suffering from amnesia, records flashbacks about his life as a CIA assassin in a notebook.

In Berlin, a CIA agent working for Deputy Director Pamela Landy is paying $3 million to an unnamed Russian source for the Neski files, documents on the theft of $20 million seven years prior. The deal is interrupted by Kirill, a Russian Federal Security Service agent who works for oligarch Yuri Gretkov. He kills the agent and source, steals the files and money, and plants fingerprints framing Bourne for the attack.

After finding Bourne's fingerprint, Landy asks Section Chief Ward Abbott about Operation Treadstone, the defunct CIA program to which Bourne belonged. She tells Abbott that the CIA agent who stole the $20 million was named in the Neski files. Some years previously, Russian politician Vladimir Neski was about to identify the thief when he was killed by his wife in a suspected murder-suicide in Berlin. Landy believes that Bourne and Treadstone's late supervisor, Alexander Conklin, were involved and that Bourne killed the Neskis.

Gretkov directs Kirill to Goa to kill Bourne. Bourne flees with Marie; Kirill follows and kills Marie, unaware that they switched seats in the midst of the chase. Bourne leaves Goa and travels to Naples, where he allows himself to be identified by security. He subdues a Diplomatic Security agent and a Carabinieri guard and copies the SIM card from his cell phone. From the subsequent phone call, he learns about Landy and the frame job.

Bourne goes to Munich to visit Jarda, the only other remaining Treadstone operative. Jarda informs Bourne that Treadstone was shut down after Conklin's death, and attacks him; Bourne strangles Jarda to death, before destroying his home in a gas explosion as agents move in.

Bourne follows Landy and Abbott to Berlin as they meet former Treadstone support technician Nicky Parsons to question her about Bourne. Bourne believes the CIA is hunting him again and calls Landy from a nearby roof. He demands a meet-up with Nicky and indicates to Landy that he can see her in the office.

Bourne kidnaps Nicky in Alexanderplatz and learns from her that Abbott had been Conklin's boss. Bourne spares Nicky after she reveals she knows nothing about the mission. Bourne then visits the hotel where the killing took place and recalls more of his mission: he killed Neski on Conklin's orders, and when Neski's wife showed up, he shot her and made it look like a murder-suicide.

Danny Zorn, Conklin's former assistant, finds inconsistencies with the report of Bourne's involvement with the death of the agent, and explains his theory to Abbott. Abbott kills Zorn to prevent him from informing Landy. Bourne breaks into Abbott's hotel room and records a conversation between him and Gretkov that incriminates them in the theft of the $20 million. When confronted, Abbott admits to Bourne that he stole the money, ordered Kirill to retrieve the files, and had Bourne framed before arranging for him to be silenced in Goa. Abbott expects Bourne to kill him, but Bourne refuses, saying Marie would not want him to, and puts a gun on the table and leaves. Landy confronts Abbott about her suspicions and he kills himself; later, she finds an envelope containing the tape of Abbott's conversations with Gretkov and Bourne in her hotel room.

Bourne travels to Moscow to find Neski's daughter, Irena. Kirill, tasked once again by Gretkov with killing Bourne, finds and wounds him. Bourne flees in a stolen taxi and Kirill chases him. Bourne forces Kirill's vehicle into a concrete divider, and leaves behind a seriously wounded Kirill, as Gretkov is arrested with Landy watching in the background. Bourne locates Irena and confesses to murdering her parents, apologizing to her as he leaves.

Later in New York City, Bourne calls Landy. She thanks him for the tape, reveals to him his original name, David Webb, and his date and place of birth, and asks him to meet her. Bourne, who is watching her from a building tells her she looks tired and to get some rest, as he disappears into the city.


  • Matt Damon as Jason Bourne: An amnesiac and former assassin of the CIA's Operation Treadstone
  • Joan Allen as Pamela Landy: Deputy Director and Task Force Chief, pursues Bourne after her operation goes badly
  • Brian Cox as Ward Abbott: CIA Section Chief, who was formerly in charge of Treadstone
  • Franka Potente as Marie Helena Kreutz: Bourne's girlfriend
  • Julia Stiles as Nicolette "Nicky" Parsons: A former agent who is taken from her post-Treadstone assignment to assist in the search for Bourne
  • Karl Urban as Kirill: A Russian Federal Security Service agent and an expert assassin who is working for Gretkov
  • Karel Roden as Yuri Gretkov: Kirill's employer
  • Gabriel Mann as Danny Zorn: Formerly assigned to Treadstone headquarters, is now on Abbott's staff
  • Marton Csokas as Jarda: A Czech former Treadstone operative based out of Munich
  • Tomas Arana as Martin Marshall: CIA Director
  • Tom Gallop as Tom Cronin: Landy's righthand agent
  • Michelle Monaghan as Kim: Landy's number two agent
  • Oksana Akinshina as Irena Neski: Daughter of politician Vladimir Neski, whom Bourne killed


The producers replaced Doug Liman, who directed The Bourne Identity. This was mainly due to the difficulties Liman had with the studio when making the first film, and their unwillingness to work with him again. British director Paul Greengrass was selected to direct the film after the producers saw Bloody Sunday (2002), Greengrass' depiction of the Bloody Sunday shootings in Northern Ireland, at Gilroy's suggestion. Producer Patrick Crowley liked Greengrass' "sense of the camera as participatory viewer", a visual style Crowley thought would work well for The Bourne Supremacy.[4] The film was shot in reverse order of its settings: some portions of the car chase and the film's ending were shot in Moscow, then most of the rest of the film was shot in and around Berlin, and the opening scenes in Goa, India were filmed last.[5][6]

"Two weeks before [the film's] release, [Greengrass] got together with its star, Matt Damon, came up with a new ending and phoned the producers saying the new idea was way better. And it would cost $200,000 and involve pulling Damon from the set of Ocean's Twelve for a re-shoot. Reluctantly the producers agreed—the movie tested 10 points higher with the new ending".[7]


Box office[edit]

The Bourne Supremacy brought in over $52,521,865 on its opening weekend, putting it at No. 1 for the weekend box office (July 23–25, 2004).[8] The film went to gross over $176,241,941 (61.1%) in North America, with the international release being $112,258,276 (38.9%) resulting in a complete total of $288,500,217 worldwide.[2]

Critical response[edit]

On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 82% based on 197 reviews, with an average rating of 7.20/10. The site's critics consensus called the film: "A well-made sequel that delivers the thrills."[9] On Metacritic, it has a weighted average score of 73 out of 100 based on 39 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[10] Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "A−" on an A+ to F scale.[11]

Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times gave the film 3 out of 4, and wrote: "That the director, Paul Greengrass, treats the material with gravity and uses good actors in well-written supporting roles elevates the movie above its genre, but not quite out of it."[12]


At the 2005 Taurus World Stunt Awards, veteran Russian stunt coordinator Viktor Ivanov and Scottish stunt driver Gillie McKenzie won the "Best Vehicle" award for their driving in the Moscow car chase scene. Dan Bradley, the film's second unit director won the overall award for stunt coordinator.[13] The film ranks 454th on Empire's 2008 list of the 500 greatest movies of all time.[14]

Year Organization Award Category Recipient Result
2005 ASCAP Film and Television Music Awards ASCAP Award Top Box Office Films John Powell Won[15]
2005 Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Films, USA Saturn Award Best Actor Matt Damon Nominated[15]
2005 Broadcast Film Critics Association Critics Choice Award Best Popular Movie Nominated[15]
2005 Cinema Audio Society Awards C.A.S. Award Outstanding Achievement in Sound Mixing for Motion Pictures Nominated[15]
2005 Edgar Allan Poe Awards Edgar Best Motion Picture Screenplay Nominated[15]
2005 Empire Awards, UK Empire Award Best Actor Matt Damon and Best Film Won[15]
2005 Empire Awards, UK Empire Award Best British Director of the Year Paul Greengrass Nominated[15]
2005 London Critics Circle Film Awards ALFS Award Best British Director Paul Greengrass Nominated[15]
2005 London Critics Circle Film Awards ALFS Award Scene of the Year The Moscow Car Chase Sequence Nominated[15]
2005 MTV Movie Award MTV Movie Award Best Action Sequence The Moscow Car Chase Nominated[15]
2005 MTV Movie Award MTV Movie Award Best Male Performance Matt Damon Nominated[15]
2005 Motion Picture Sound Editors, USA Golden Reel Award Best Sound Editing in Domestic Features – Dialogue & ADR and Best Sound Editing in Domestic Features - Sound Effects and Foley Nominated[15]
2005 People's Choice Awards, USA People's Choice Award Favorite Movie Drama Nominated[15]
2005 Teen Choice Award Teen Choice Award Choice Movie Actor: Action Matt Damon Nominated[15]
2005 Teen Choice Award Teen Choice Award Choice Movie: Action Nominated[15]
2005 USC Scripter Award USC Scripter Award Tony Gilroy (Screenwriter) and Robert Ludlum (Author) Nominated[15]
2005 World Soundtrack Award World Soundtrack Award Best Original Soundtrack of the Year — John Powell and Soundtrack Composer of the Year — John Powell Nominated[15]
2005 World Stunt Awards Taurus Award Best Stunt Coordinator or 2nd Unit Director Dan Bradley Won[13]
2005 World Stunt Awards Taurus Award Best Work with a Vehicle Viktor Ivanov, Gillie McKenzie Won[13]
2005 World Stunt Awards Taurus Award Best Fight Darrin Prescott and Chris O'Hara Nominated[13]



  1. ^ "The Bourne Supremacy". British Film Institute. London. Archived from the original on January 29, 2009. Retrieved September 30, 2012.
  2. ^ a b c "The Bourne Supremacy (2004)". Box Office Mojo. Archived from the original on November 1, 2012. Retrieved August 6, 2007.
  3. ^ Bennett, Bruce (May 28, 2008). "Jason Bourne Takes His Case to MoMA". Archived from the original on April 21, 2010. Retrieved September 10, 2009.
  4. ^ "Picking Up the Thread". Production notes Archived September 14, 2010, at the Wayback Machine. The Bourne Supremacy (2004). Retrieved 2010-07-16.
  5. ^ "Setting Bourne's World". Production notes Archived September 14, 2010, at the Wayback Machine. The Bourne Supremacy (2004). Retrieved 2010-07-16.
  6. ^ "The Bourne Supremacy Production Notes | 2004 Movie Releases". Archived from the original on August 17, 2012. Retrieved December 30, 2022.
  7. ^ Armstrong, Stephen (June 8, 2008). "A whirlwind in action". The Guardian. Archived from the original on March 8, 2021. Retrieved January 30, 2021.
  8. ^ "Weekend Box Office Results for July 23-25, 2004 - Box Office Mojo". Archived from the original on August 17, 2018. Retrieved August 17, 2018.
  9. ^ "The Bourne Supremacy". Rotten Tomatoes. Archived from the original on June 5, 2013. Retrieved July 30, 2020.
  10. ^ "The Bourne Supremacy". Metacritic. Archived from the original on October 13, 2012. Retrieved August 17, 2018.
  11. ^ "Find CinemaScore" (Type "Bourne" in the search box). CinemaScore. Archived from the original on April 13, 2022. Retrieved July 8, 2021.
  12. ^ Ebert, Roger (July 23, 2004). "Damon makes 'Bourne' a supreme thriller". Chicago Sun-Times. Archived from the original on January 26, 2021. Retrieved February 4, 2021.
  13. ^ a b c d "2005 Winners & Nominees". Taurus World Stunt Awards. Archived from the original on November 9, 2021. Retrieved January 31, 2021.
  14. ^ "The 500 Greatest Movies of All Time". Empire Features. Archived from the original on April 5, 2012.
  15. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q "The Bourne Supremacy (2004) – Awards". IMDb. Archived from the original on July 13, 2007. Retrieved August 24, 2007.

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