Paramount Pictures used its CinemaCon presentation this evening to either announce or confirm numerous films they have in store. They officially announced that two new “Star Trek” films are on the way, as is a new “G.I. Joe” and “Micronauts” film, two animated films called “Monsters on the Hill” and “Luck,” and a new live-action “Spongebob Squarepants” movie called “A Wonderful Sponge”.
However the bulk of their presentation was taken up by this Summer’s “Mission: Impossible – Fallout” with star Tom Cruise and filmmaker Christopher McQuarrie finally revealing and explaining the film’s big stunt piece involving Cruise – a uniquely filmed HALO jump.
Explained in great detail via animatics and rough takes, the sequence took a year to figure out. The action sees Cruise’s Ethan Hunt and CIA agent August Walker (Henry Cavill) skydive from a high 35,000 feet altitude at sunset, jumping into a lightning storm above Paris.
Mid-jump, they are struck by lightning and Hunt must catch Walker, who is now unconscious, and resuscitate him mid-air. Cruise reportedly did 106 jumps out of a plane in order to get three usable takes which will be merged together to look like one. The lightning will be added digitally, but otherwise the whole sequence was done for real.
As the sequence takes place at sunset, they only had a three-minute window each day to shoot the scene. In fact, to film the scene, the camera operator needed to wear the camera on top of his head, and jump out of the plane backwards whilst staying about three feet from Cruise the entire time even as they reached speeds of up to 200 miles per hour.
To rehearse the sequence, the crew built the largest wind tunnel in the world along with a custom oxygen helmet that was tested by the Royal Air Force. The sequence was shot in the United Arab Emirates as Cruise says: “we wouldn’t have been allowed to do this anywhere else.”
Some of the other cast members turned up, with Simon Pegg saying at numerous points in the film that he and his co-stars thought Cruise was seriously about to die: “It is a daily stress going to work with him, because you don’t know is you are going to see him tomorrow.”
“Mission: Impossible – Fallout” is set to open July 27th.