Bourne Franchise: Matt Damon Crucial to Series Success

Jason Bourne dominated the opening weekend at the domestic box office with a gross of $60 million.

Universal’s fifth film in its Bourne franchise is performing well above forecasts with an opening day taking in about $23 million at 4,026 sites.

Jason Bourne is Damon’s fourth film as a former CIA assassin dealing with memory loss.

The franchise launched with 2002’s “The Bourne Identity,” followed by 2004’s “The Bourne Supremacy” and 2007’s “The Bourne Ultimatum.”

Damon did not appear in 2012’s “The Bourne Legacy,” which starred Jeremy Renner.

Jason Bourne posted the second-best launch of the five films. “The Bourne Ultimatum” opened domestically with $69.3 million in 2007 on its way to a $227.4 million total.

Paul Greengrass directs “Jason Bourne,” which also stars Tommy Lee Jones, Alicia Vikander, Vincent Cassel, Julia Stiles, and Riz Ahmed.

The action-packed film, which carries a $120 million price tag, is set in Athens, Berlin, London and Las Vegas with the Vikander and Cassel characters in constant pursuit.

Should the estimates hold, “Jason Bourne” will finish above Tom Cruise’s “Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation,” which opened with $55.5 million over the same weekend last year.  It will easily top  “The Bourne Legacy,” which debuted to $38 million in 2012.

The four Bourne films have grossed a worldwide total of $1.17 billion — $638 million domestically and $583 million internationally.

Universal is releasing “Jason Bourne” in 46 international markets this weekend. The international opening weekend estimate for “Jason Bourne” would be the largest in franchise history at $49 million.

Combining domestic and foreign box office numbers, the film’s estimated opening weekend total is $110 million.