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21
3 YEARS

Jeremy Renner Firming Up Lead Role in 'The Bourne Legacy'

The Oscar-nominated actor would jump straight into the franchise right after filming "The Avengers."

The InStyle/Warner Bros. Party
Jason Merritt/Getty Images

There's barely enough Jeremy Renner to go around.

The Hurt Locker star, who was also Oscar nominated for his work in The Town last year, has been handed an offer for the starring role in Tony Gilroy's The Bourne Legacy. Gilroy, who wrote or co-wrote the first three films in Universal's Bourne saga, has been testing actors for the last few weeks to play a brand new lead character distinct from Matt Damon's Jason Bourne (Damon isn't returning). But Renner is the guy everybody wants right now.

The problem, as always, is scheduling. It took a while to work out his ability to star in Paramount's Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters, which he's shooting now for a March release. That followed filming his role in Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol, also for Paramount, which hits theaters in December.

Then there's the little movie The Avengers, in which he plays Hawkeye for Marvel Studios and Disney. That comes out in May next year, but audiences will get a sneak peek at him in Thor, which Paramount hammers into theaters in two weeks to kick off the summer. Avengers starts shooting soon and will continue filming into August and September with Joss Whedon at the helm and a slew of other superheroes on set.

But Renner had been considering starring opposite Eric Bana in Sheldon Turner's revenge thriller By Virtue Fall in the fall. It's a project Renner has been flirting with for most of the last year. Now it looks like he will instead jump from Avengers right into his third (!!) potential franchise with Bourne, then shoot Virtue after the New Year.

Given his packed schedule, Renner, who's repped by CAA and Untitled, may need to be superhuman after all.