The Thomas Crown Affair is a 1999 heist film directed by John McTiernan. It is a remake of the 1968 film of the same name. Pierce Brosnan, Rene Russo and Denis Leary star. The film's success prompted plans for a sequel starring Brosnan titled The Topkapi Affair, which also would be a remake of the 1964 film Topkapi starring Melina Mercouri, Maximilian Schell, and Peter Ustinov. Both films are based on Eric Ambler's 1962 novel, The Light of Day.
Thomas Crown is a wealthy investment banker who savors a good challenge. Among other diversions, he crashes an expensive catamaran while racing and bets $100,000 on a golf swing simply because "it's a beautiful Saturday morning," and there is not much else to do. Crown orchestrates an elaborate New York museum heist to steal a painting (San Giorgio Maggiore at dusk) by Monet valued at $100 million. The insurers of the artwork send ace insurance investigator Catherine Banning to assist Detective Michael McCann and the police in solving the crime. From the beginning, Banning suspects Crown is behind the theft. A game of cat-and-mouse ensues that results in their becoming lovers and gives Crown exactly what he was seeking, as his psychiatrist puts it: "A worthy adversary." To prove his sincerity and test her loyalty to him, Crown returns to the museum under the eye of Banning and dozens of police officers, vowing to put the stolen painting back.