Tom Cruise is crazy.
That is not a pejorative or an insult or an actual statement about the man’s mental faculties.
If you look at Cruise’s body of work while being a Hollywood leading man, you simply can’t deny the man is out of his gourd. For his fans, that’s actually a wonderful thing.
Look no further than some of the utter insanity attached to Cruise’s latest blockbuster, “Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One,” which is the seventh film in the franchise.
That mouthful of a title is rapidly reaching its July 12 release date, which means it’s time for the promotional material to kick it up a notch.
Given that, it’s safe to say that Cruise’s PR team may have the cushiest gig in Hollywood — because you don’t need much to sell these mind-blowing stunts.
The latest example of this came when Cruise and company promoted a wild “speed flying” that will figure to be one of the film’s touchstone action set pieces.
You can watch the promotional behind-the-scenes video below:
For the unaware, speed flying is a new hybrid extreme sport that has gained some popularity in recent years.
While a gross generalization, the sport appears to be a hybrid of paragliding, skydiving and parachuting, taking elements from each of those sports to create something wholly different — and dangerous.
In the video, Cruise describes speed flying as a “very beautiful and delicate sport.”
“But it also is one of the most dangerous sports in the world,” Christopher McQuarrie, the writer/director of Cruise’s latest film, added in the video.
McQuarrie added that while skydiving is “fairly predictable,” speed flying is “incredibly unpredictable.”
Given that, you can understand the consternation with allowing Cruise, who turns 61 on July 3, to perform these stunts on his own.
And yet, as he has done throughout his career, Cruise appeared to complete the wild stunt with aplomb (at least, there are no reports surfacing of any fatal or horrific accidents).
“Behind the scenes, we were all in absolute terror,” McQuarrie said.
Speed flying is dangerous enough on its own, but combine that with the added logistics of filming?
Is Tom Cruise the last true Hollywood movie star?
Yes: 100% (1 Votes)
No: 0% (0 Votes)
“Landing, Tom had to be flying towards the camera vehicle,” McQuarrie described. “That meant that Tom had to hit the exact mark or it can end in disaster.”
This terrifying exhibition of insanity won’t be the only mind-bending stunt Cruise pulls off in his latest “Mission: Impossible” movie, even if it is the most dangerous.
Cruise already garnered plenty of attention by taking every young boy’s dream — building a giant ramp in your backyard to see how far you can fly on your bicycle — and upping it by several factors during an earlier set of promotional materials.
In that stunt, unlike speed flying, where Cruise is more or less at the mercy of the breeze, Cruise at least has some semblance of control over his motorcycle. That is, until he drives it right off a cliff and dismounts it in mid-air.
Cruise, for whatever one may think of him, has certainly figured out how to connect with audiences.
“Mission: Impossible,” which made its theatrical debut in 1996 with Cruise (and was actually a continuation of the 1966 and 1988 serialized television show of the same name), has long hung its hat on bombastic action, spy thrills and those insane stunts.
But Cruise has also seen incredible success with his “Top Gun” franchise. The most recent iteration of that movie, “Top Gun: Maverick“, which debuted in May 2022, has been a box-office smash hit, due in no small part to the film’s unabashed patriotism.
Whether it’s soaring through the skies in a plane or a flimsy parachute, it’s clear Cruise will continue to perform the most insane of stunts for his loyal fans.
It’s easy to see why so many consider him the last true star in Hollywood.
But is the soon-to-be 61-year-old Hollywood star nearing the end? McQuarrie doesn’t think so.
“With Tom, there are no limits,” he said. “So we’ve become a little more adventurous every time.”
Share with others!