The first time someone attempted to make a Jason Bourne movie without Jason Bourne, the result was The Bourne Legacy, a not-particularly successful and slightly strange spinoff starring Jeremy Renner as a guy who vaguely looked like Jason Bourne and had a vaguely similar backstory as Jason Bourne, and the same cool action moves as Jason Bourne, but was not actually Jason Bourne. The film became the only major flop in the series, but it did at least result in Matt Damon and director Paul Greengrass returning to make one more actual Bourne film, Jason Bourne. 

Perhaps the concept of a group of covert black ops assassins with no memories would work on television instead? That’s the hope, at least, with Treadstone, an upcoming USA Network series about the infamous group behind Jason Bourne’s amnesia and fighting skills. The show, created by Heroes’ Tim Kring, is about the sleeper agents of Treadstone being mysterious activated around the world. Here’s the first trailer for the new show:

The cast includes Jeremy Irvine, Brian J. Smith, Omar Metwally, and Patrick Fugit — at least as far as has been announced to date, none of the actors from the Bourne films and its Treadstone are slated to appear. Executive producer Ben Smith explained the premise of the show (and the backstory behind Treadstone) to Entertainment Weekly:

Treadstone was a top-secret black-ops program that used different forms of behavioral modification and extreme training to turn recruits into nearly super-human weapons .... There were other programs that sprang from this including BLACKBRIAR and CICADA. Treadstone was officially shut down after the events surrounding Jason Bourne exposed it. Our series starts when the CIA learns that someone is “waking up” these agents in different parts of the world that were part of a Treadstone program called ‘Cicada.’

Treadstone premieres on USA Network in October. Again, Treadstone is a spooky idea, and I could see it lending itself to a solid TV series. I just wonder if people will want to see a Jason Bourne show without Jason Bourne.

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