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Branagh to star in Tom Clancy film and make Shakespeare in 3D

Sir Kenneth Branagh will play a Russian villain intent on destroying the US economy in Tom Clancy's new franchise

Sir Kenneth Branagh will star and direct in Tom Clancy’s forthcoming US thriller franchise Jack Ryan, and also plans to adapt a Shakespeare play in 3D.

The British actor and director is best known for his Shakespeare adaptions. He was nominated at the Oscars for Henry V and Hamlet, both of which he directed, and has also made adaptions of Othello and Much Ado About Nothing.

He told Collider.com: “As a filmmaker, I would like to do an IMAX 3D Shakespeare film.

“Instead of going to some strange part of the world and it’s a rainy afternoon and you’re looking for something to do, you go to the IMAX theater, but you’re always watching the story of wolves or something. I fancy a 40-minute A Midsummer Night’s Dream in IMAX 3D.”

Branagh has began to clinch regular supporting roles in high-production Hollywood films, including the Marilyn Monroe biopic My Week With Marilyn and the Tom Cruise vehicle Valkyrie, as well as his role in the Harry Potter franchise.

Jack Ryan – in which he will play a Russian villain who plots to wreck the US economy in an ‘origins’ film based on Clancy’s original books – will be the first time he performs in a no-holds barred thriller.

Branagh told Collider.com: “Jack Ryan is a very fast-paced, very contemporary, very action-driven thriller.  I don’t tend to think of him as a villain, but if you’re playing a villain, you don’t think of him as a villain.  You just think, ‘My guy’.  The character is a great anti-thesis, but it isn’t as simple as that.

“It’s great to see a character in this film with Jack Ryan. It’s just a very strong, very interesting, complicated, complex character.

“When the project first came my way, it was really to do that. I had a long time to think about that prospect, before actually eventually having them ask me to direct it. And then, we put aside the issue of me being in it for a while because there were so many other things to deal with.  Literally, months later, Paramount said, ‘Well, do you think you might?’ I said, ‘Yeah, I think I’d like to.’ “

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