STARRING Angelina Jolie, Liev Schreiber, Chiwetel Ejiofor
DIRECTED BY Phillip Noyce
WRITTEN BY Kurt Wimmer and Brian Helgeland
After kicking butt in Tomb Raider and taking names in Wanted, Angelina Jolie has shown that she can play the action game just as well as Hollywood’s A-list big boys. But with her latest rock-’em-sock-’em thriller, Salt, she may prove that she can replace them, too.
You see, back in the summer of 2008, Salt was a script about a CIA agent who’s accused of being a Russian sleeper spy — a male Russian sleeper spy. At the time, Tom Cruise was attached to play the lead. But as the script evolved into more of an on-the-run espionage thriller, Cruise began to feel that the character was a little too close to his Mission: Impossible alter ego, Ethan Hunt. When Cruise bailed, Sony Pictures co-chair Amy Pascal remembered a series of conversations she’d had with Jolie about creating a female James Bond-style franchise for her at the studio. And voilà, the movie’s hero, Edwin Salt, was rechristened Evelyn Salt. ”We tried to change the name to Edwina,” says Jolie via e-mail, ”but it didn’t quite have the same ring to it.”