25 things you didn’t know about your favorite action movies

Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark ©Paramount All Rights Reserved
Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark ©Paramount All Rights Reserved /
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The Bourne Identity (Photo by Daniel Smith/Getty Images) /

The Bourne Identity – Based on a real case of forgotten identity

There have been several Bourne movies over the years, but let’s take a look at the film that started it all.

The Bourne Identity is the story of a man who is found wounded and unconscious by fishermen who nurse him back to health. This man (Matt Damon) has forgotten everything about his life and who he was, but slowly starts to remember small details about who he is. He quickly realizes that he may have been more than just a regular guy, and he travels around the world to figure out who he is, and why someone wants him dead.

Though most people might be aware the film is based on a book, the concept behind Jason Bourne is actually based on a real person. A preacher in Rhode Island named Ansel Bourne had the first documented case of dissociative fugue, a condition similar to amnesia or dissociative identity disorder.

In 1887, Bourne forgot who he was and started a new life in Pennsylvania under a different name, where he opened a convenience store. Three months later, he woke up and remembered who he was, but had forgotten everything about his new life. He was pretty confused as to why he was in Pennsylvania.

The Bourne Identity is also one of many movies that was affected by the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The studio worried that the movie may be promoting notions of anti-Americanism, something they did not want to be associated with so soon after a major terrorist attack on the US. They ended up creating a new opening and closing sequences for the film, but director Doug Liman and Damon were against the new changes.

The original version of the film tested well with audiences, so they stuck with it. It worked out well for them in the end, at least.