Tom Jolliffe on the prospect of Tom Cruise in space…
2021: A Tom Cruise Space Odyssey. We’d heard whispers in the last year but it would seem that plans are indeed afoot to send Tom Cruise up into space in the name of movie entertainment. Do we doubt Cruise will make launch? Absolutely not.
Since becoming something of an action specialist, thanks to the Mission: Impossible franchise, Cruise has progressively sought to one up himself on impressive feats of danger and stunt work. Whether it was hanging precariously from a cliff in Mission: Impossible 2, scaling the Burj Khalifa in Ghost Protocol, or any number of the death defying stunts he performed in Mission: Impossible – Fallout (one of which left him with a broken leg), Cruise continues to push the envelope with his dedication to entertainment. These stunts are always impressive feats, even considering the safety measures in place. As we saw of course, all the safety measures can’t guarantee that the man won’t get injured, and occasionally seriously. The question is though… will Cruise go one step too far whilst the cameras roll? Is he slowly working his way to an untimely on camera accident that might spell the end of Thomas Mapother III? Grim thought I know, but Cruise is about to venture into very testing, still very unknown territory by going into space.
In 2021 Cruise will venture out to space for a Doug Liman film which as yet we have no details on. Earlier rumours or wry suggestions at the concept of Cruise in space suggested perhaps that he’d be doing something for the Mission: Impossible franchise. That rules out this first venture into space. Quite what will happen out there or what they plan to shoot remains to be seen, but one would guess Cruise will be confined to the interior of a shuttle. However… I do believe that it won’t be a first and only cinematic venture. Lets face it, once Cruise dips his toe into something, he’ll already be thinking about how to outdo himself. So could we expect Cruise to do a space walk? Just a movie star tethered to the exterior of a ship, at the mercy of the locking mechanisms on those cables, and whatever space debris may be floating past.
As a scientologist Cruise of course has a natural interest in life beyond the planet. That aside, Cruise also seems to have genuine verve to push himself into an array of situations that test his limits. He’s learned to fly helicopters and been subjected to the G-force in fighter jets (for the upcoming Top Gun: Maverick). He’s become adept at stunt driving on two and four wheels, not to mention high altitude stunts jumping from planes of scaling those enormous buildings. Does the man hold any fear? Perhaps not.
In terms of this potential film of course, one thing that might be left by the wayside could be the film itself. We’ve seen many gimmicks or pitches that gained all the attention for a project, only for the movie itself to feel disappointingly hollow. If you think of how ground-breaking the tech was in Avatar as an example, for what was ultimately a pretty tired rehash of Pocahontas, then I would hope that Doug Liman and Cruise will make a film worthy of the trip to space. Potentially it’s going to be ground-breaking, so it needs to be something that will be remembered in time. Cruise has done a number of films where we’re left talking about the stunts but not a lot else. There was the great zero gravity sequence in The Mummy, in what was otherwise pretty dreadful. The Mission: Impossible films have been a lot better overall of course, but still feel fairly interchangeable in terms of the mission goals and the MacGuffins. It’s been a long time since Cruise made a really great film. Sending himself to space certainly deserves to be the one that really pushes him thematically back to the levels he’s capable of.
What do you think about the prospect of Tom Cruise going into space? What would you like to see him do out there? Let us know on our social channels @flickeringmyth…
Tom Jolliffe is an award winning screenwriter and passionate cinephile. He has a number of films out on DVD/VOD around the world and several releases due in 2020/21, including The Witches Of Amityville (starring Emmy winner, Kira Reed Lorsch), War of The Worlds: The Attack and the star studded action films, Renegades (Lee Majors, Billy Murray) and Crackdown. Find more info at the best personal site you’ll ever see…https://www.instagram.com/jolliffeproductions/