The occasional “take a meeting’ report pops up, and the story is always the same. Movie player A sits down with movie player B in what we assume is some official manner, none of us onlookers really knows why they’re meeting and therefore, wild speculation ensues. They’re interesting stories, I think, and not because a number of them later translate into something more concrete but because a good deal of them don’t. It’s like a tiny tear has opened in space-time and we’ve caught a glimpse at a never-was bizzaro world, a collaboration that never happened.
Movie player A in this case is Tom Cruise and B is Peter Jackson. Is there really nothing else we know about why they might be meeting? Well… not quite nothing.
…but as near as. Here’s a little bit of informed guesswork that brings some knowledge into play. Contribute any additions of your own in the comments.
The big Peter Jackson story of the moment is the continued development of The Hobbit. Could Cruise be looking to play a role in del Toro’s upcoming films? It’s an outside bet, I feel. Extremely outside. For one thing, Guillermo del Toro was not present himself. If we assume for a second that Cruise and Jackson’s business in the meeting was one of Hobbit casting, what character would Cruise be eyeing anyway? The voice of Smaug? The One Ring speculate The Necromancer, a facet of Sauron who is talked of in The Hobbit but doesn’t actually have anything to do. I guess they’re pulling legs.
Jackson is also producing and not directing the Dambusters film. This seems more of an easy match with Cruise’s acting style and perceived persona. Again, though, Christian Rivers was not present and he is, or at least was, the director in charge of the Dambusters. A considerably better fit than the Hobbit, though.
Another film we’d assume Jackson would be producing would be a District 9 sequel. I’m not even going to dignify this lunatic digression with any further discussion. And as for the H word… don’t even dream it.
Perhaps we’ll have more luck looking towards films that Jackson is going to direct and not just produce. The first of these to come to mind is probably the Tintin sequel. Though Jackson has made it clear that scripting on the film has yet to begin, locking down a busy man like Cruise this far ahead of time is probably a good idea. They may have just been kicking around the notion, taking its temperature, seeing if it would be worth Jackson’s time developing the film with Cruise in mind. A possibility. Who would Cruise be playing? I guess that depends on just what Tintin story Jackson has in mind.
Something else we know Jackson is keen on would be a return to his (often low-budget) horror movies. At Comic-Con he all but promised he was going to jump back into the genre. Is Cruise a match for one of those? At least as much as Michael J. Fox was, I guess. Or maybe Cruise isn’t looking to star, but perhaps set the film up at UA? Maybe.
The same is very possibly true of Jackson’s potential adaptation of the Temeraire books by Naomi Novik. A history twisting spin on the Napoleonic era that injects bloody great Dragons into the war, adapting these novels has been back-burner simmered by Jackson for some years now. Perhaps he’s now deciding to move forwards with the project? Perhaps at UA, then, or with Cruise in the cast? For me, this is the specific named project most likely to be true. Indeed, the only thing more likely is that they were meeting about something else entirely, something we don’t yet know a thing about.
Let’s not assume that Jackson was looking to Cruise for a collaborator when there’s every chance it could have been working in the opposite direction. Cruise could have been trying to bring in Jackson on a project he’s got cooking at UA – and if so, that project could be just about anything.
First seen at the Sydney Morning Herald.