What all goes into making a Mission: Impossible movie? According to the star and arguably the mastermind behind the film franchise, “fun.” If there’s one word Tom Cruise consistently uses to describe making these movies and all his death-defying stunts, it’s fun. Cruise always sounds like he’s having the time of his life making movies, but from the sound of it, he has an especially good time making Mission: Impossible movies.
We all know Tom Cruise is a great actor and movie star, but he’s also a great producer. With each Mission: Impossible commentary, the directors share his notes and input, and they range from shots needed for a sequence, how to get across a piece of exposition, what Ethan would and would not do, and a whole lot more. He knows exactly what a Mission: Impossible movie needs to be. He has really shaped what a franchise is all about, with the help of countless fellow filmmakers he always makes sure to thank during the end credits.
Below, check out what we learned from the Mission: Impossible audio commentaries.
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After playing significant roles in the two previous entries in the Mission: Impossible franchise, Jeremy Renner‘s intelligence analyst character William Brandt isn’t referenced or mentioned at all in Mission: Impossible – Fallout. We knew his scheduling requirements for the Avengers movies kept him on a short leash, but now writer/director Chris McQuarrie has revealed that Fallout nearly had a Jeremy Renner cameo in which Brandt was killed off. Read More »
After over 20 years and six movies, the Mission: Impossible series is still evolving, and not just because the action is getting bigger and wilder. Mission: Impossible – Fallout contains the biggest action sequences in the franchise, but also the most personal. Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) is more conflicted than ever as he enters morally murky waters in the well-received sequel.
Following up Rogue Nation, writer-director Christopher McQuarrie returns not to simply top the previous installments, but to deepen Ethan Hunt and the world of the IMF. The filmmaker gives Ethan Hunt as many personal challenges as physical ones in the sequel, although the action sequences are stunning to behold and mind-boggling in their ambition and scope. Both Ethan Hunt and Tom Cruise always go big, never home.
And as you’d imagine, McQuarrie had a lot to say about the making of the film in our interview.
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“A man with no fear” is how Mission: Impossible 2 director John Woo describes Tom Cruise, who laughs in the face of death with each Mission: Impossible sequel. Cruise has hung off an airplane, jumped around the Burj Khalifa, held his breath for six minutes, and flown jets and planes, all in the name of entertainment. The Evil Knievel of the big screen accomplished what’s probably his most miraculous stunt yet in Mission: Impossible – Fallout: jumping out of a plane 25,000 feet in the air.
Recently, writer-director Christopher McQuarrie told us about all the hard work that went into the breathtaking HALO jump sequence.
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(In our Spoiler Reviews, we take a deep dive into a new release and get to the heart of what makes it tick…and every story point is up for discussion. In this entry: Mission: Impossible – Fallout.)
“The end you’ve always feared is coming,” the villainous Solomon Lane tells Ethan Hunt halfway through Mission: Impossible – Fallout. “The fallout of all your good intentions.” If the Mission: Impossible franchise has one specific problem, it’s this: it took a very long time to tell us who Ethan Hunt was. From the beginning, Hunt, as played by Tom Cruise, was a bit of a cipher.
Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation changed that. The previous entry in the Mission franchise took a step back and finally asked, “Who is Ethan Hunt?” The answer: he’s kind of a crazy jerk. Someone who will risk everyone’s life just to come out ahead. This was a fascinating development in Ethan’s character trajectory, but perhaps director Christopher McQuarrie – who is the first Mission franchise filmmaker to return for a second time – realized it was a bit too much. That the series couldn’t realistically continue if Ethan Hunt remained a borderline sociopath.
Which brings us to Fallout, the most breathless, exciting, action-packed installment in the series yet. I don’t know if I’m quite ready to call it the best entry in the series – Rogue Nation still holds that distinction, as of now – but I am ready to declare Fallout to be the most thrilling Mission. A film so relentlessly entertaining that it might actually exhaust you. Believe the hype: this really is the best action movie since Mad Max: Fury Road.
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(Welcome to Team Leaders, a series where we explore how the directors of the Mission: Impossible movies used this franchise as a canvas to explore their pet themes and show off their unique sensibilities. In this edition: Christopher McQuarrie leads the series into the future with Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation.)
With Ghost Protocol (’11), writer/director Christopher McQuarrie previously put his stamp (albeit anonymously) on the franchise’s future, having been brought in midway through shooting to help re-tool the narrative of animation great Brad Bird’s live-action blockbuster debut. This “doctoring” assignment arrived because of the scribe’s growing history with Tom Cruise, which began on the old-fashioned Hitler assassination adventure, Valkyrie (’08), where McQuarrie tailored the part of rebellious Nazi officer Colonel Claus von Stauffenberg for Cruise after introducing the All-American marque idol to director Bryan Singer at United Artists.
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Tom Cruise loves risking his life for our entertainment, and no film series has awarded him the opportunity to do this more than Mission: Impossible. In each new Mission, Cruise increases the chances of premature death by throwing himself into dangerous situations. A new Mission: Impossible stunts highlight reel showcases all the crazy stuff Cruise did for Mission: Impossible – Fallout.
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Talk about impossible: somehow, Mission: Impossible has blossomed into the best modern-day action franchise. Since 1996, Tom Cruise has been inviting audiences along as he defies the odds, risks his life, runs like hell, and delivers increasingly entertaining adventures. Unlike most franchises, Mission: Impossible has generally improved with each subsequent entry. Now, Mission: Impossible – Fallout is ready to draw us in once again.
Before the film arrives, we’ve decided to accept the most dangerous mission of all: a journey through the entire Mission: Impossible franchise in an attempt to learn what makes it tick.
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Until now, each entry in Tom Cruise‘s ongoing Mission: Impossible franchise has been directed by a different person. But that changes with this month’s Mission: Impossible – Fallout, the first entry to bring back a returning filmmaker in writer/director Christopher McQuarrie. This is one of /Film’s most anticipated movies of the year, and now the first Mission Impossible Fallout early buzz has arrived from the film’s premiere in Paris. Read More »
The fan outrage around Rian Johnson‘s direction of Star Wars: The Last Jedi has become so torrid that directors who have nothing to do with Star Wars are starting to get roped in. Or, perhaps out of some noble Jedi instinct, they’re stepping in to defend the director from the fan backlash that has been going on for more than six (!) months now.
James Mangold, who has a pretty good standing within the geek community for helming the terrific Logan and scoring an Oscar nomination for it, is the latest to chime in to tell fans to just…chill. But he has more to say than just “calm down” — Mangold warns that if fans take their extreme backlash too far, it could result in their worst fears coming true. Read More »