Mission: Impossible Director Casts Doubt Over Tom Cruise’s Franchise Departure

For some time now it has been known that Mission: Impossible 7 & 8 were to be the swansong of Tom Cruise’s Ethan Hunt. At least that is what everyone thought, but now director Christopher McQuarrie has cast doubt on the next round of Mission: Impossible movies being the end of Cruise’s run in the franchise. While there have been plenty of hints about the fate of Hunt in the new movies including reports to that effect earlier this year, it appears that it may not be the case. Speaking to Light The Fuse podcast, McQuarrie explained:

“Let me tell you, I’ve been working with Tom Cruise for 15 years and I cannot tell you the number of times I’ve been standing next to the man, witnessed an event and then read about it in the trades the next day and none of what they describe is actually true… When you read articles in the trades, just put the imaginary word in front of the headline: ‘The Agenda Is…’ When you read ‘anonymous sources’ or ‘sources close to the production say,’ that’s somebody putting it out there for a specific reason. That’s someone wanting others to think that for a specific reason, and you can never know for sure what those reasons are. You learn to ignore it and laugh at it. In today’s world, you wait 17 minutes and another news cycle will sweep it away.”

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Tom Cruise is having the best time of his career right now thanks to his appearance in Top Gun: Maverick, which has become the biggest movie of the year, of Paramount’s history and of Cruise’s career by some way. The film has been a phenomenon of the year after being delayed for two years due to the Covid pandemic, but is now sitting on a worldwide gross of $1.32 billion, almost $400 million ahead of its nearest rivals.

With Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part 1 and Part 2 being thought to be Cruise’s final films in the franchise had many believing that the movies could follow the success of Top Gun: Maverick and bring in some huge box office results. While the franchise on its own has been a big crowd-puller over its last few movies after a couple of shaky entries, the prospect of a franchise finale is always something that can elevate a successful movie to the level of a mega hit.

Now in his 60s, Tom Cruise is clearly not getting any younger and is insistent on performing his own stunts, which would support the belief that his Mission: Impossible days are coming to an end. With the actor also having a mystery project in the works with director McQuarrie, it would likely put any future Mission: Impossible movies out to around the time Cruise hits his 65th birthday, which would put him in Harrison Ford territory for the believability factor. Whether or not Mission Impossible – Dead Reckoning is his last in the franchise or not, there are few who expect anything other than a monster hit for the action hero.