Jack Reacher may be headed to television. Lee Child, whose Jack Reacher book series was turned into a pair of Paramount movies starring Tom Cruise, said today that there is a deal in place to turn the novels into a TV series. According to Child, there will be no more movies with Cruise and he also won’t star in the potential TV series.
The movies, 2012’s Jack Reacher and 2016’s Jack Reacher: Never Go Back, were produced by Skydance and Cruise/Wagner and distributed by Paramount. We hear that the potential series would be co-produced by Skydance Television and Paramount Television, with Skydance taking lead. According to Child, it would be toplined by a new actor more befitting the imposing, burly character he created in his books. Sources said the project is still in nascent stages, with the producers still figuring out what the next chapter in the franchise should be.
Skydance TV and Paramount TV recently teamed up to successfully reboot as a TV series with a new actor another famous book series that already had been made into action movies, Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan for Amazon.
Child, who has written 23 Reacher novels (and a short story collection), praised Cruise’s acting chops in an interview with BBC Radio Manchester, but that “Cruise, for all his talent, didn’t have that physicality,” noting that the the actor’s size threw off his some of his core readers who saw the films.
“I really enjoyed working with Cruise. He’s a really, really nice guy. We had a lot of fun,” Child said. “But ultimately the readers are right. The size of Reacher is really, really important and it’s a big component of who he is… So what I’ve decided to do is – there won’t be any more movies with Tom Cruise. Instead we’re going to take it to Netflix or something like that. Long-form streaming television, with a completely new actor.”
He added: “We’re rebooting and starting over and we’re going to try and find the perfect guy.”
We hear that it has not been determined yet where the potential series would be pitched, with streaming, broadcast and cable all considered possibilities.
Christopher McQuarrie directed the first film in the Jack Reacher franchise, which grossed $218.3 million worldwide. Its sequel, directed by Edward Zwick, fared less well, grossing $162.1 million globally.