New <i>Jack Ryan</i> Images Surface of Chris Pine and Kevin Costner

The return of Jack Ryan has been long in the making. The project was announced in 2010 with the working title Moscow, not long after Lost helmer Jack Bender signed on to direct; however, he eventually bailed out due to TV commitments. Thor's Kenneth Branagh then took over directing duties and also signed on to play the film's villain, finally kicking the film into high gear.

USA Today just released a pair of photos from the film featuring star Chris Pine and Kevin Costner. Jack Ryan is something of an origin story for the Tom Clancy character who's been portrayed by Alec Baldwin, Harrison Ford and Ben Affleck. Costner plays Ryan's mentor, training him and laying the groundwork that will lead to him becoming one of the best CIA analysts around. Keira Knightley will play Ryan's love interest.

As reported in August, the film is expected to kick off a trilogy with Pine as the title character who first appeared on screen in The Hunt for Red October. There are also plans for a spinoff film called Without Remorse that focuses on another of Costner's trainees, played by Tom Hardy. Jack Ryan is set to open Dec. 25.

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