George Clooney is weighing-in on that leaked audio of Tom Cruise shouting at Mission: Impossible 7 crew members, who apparently violated the film's strict production protocols concerning COVID-19. Clooney reportedly spoke on the matter in an upcoming interview with Howard Stern, while promoting his new film The Midnight Sky. Clooney reportedly not only didn't criticize Tom Cruise, he actually showed supporting and understanding for the Mission: Impossible star. Specifically, Clooney is quoted as saying, "He didn't overreact because it is a problem," when referring to Cruise's tirade, which was leaked by The Sun yesterday, and later authenticated by NYT.
In the full quote (via E!), George Clooney says the following:
"He didn't overreact because it is a problem," Clooney told Stern. "I have a friend who's an AD on another TV show who just had the almost exact same thing happen with not quite as far out a response."
Clooney does admit that his tactics in dealing with the situation may be a lot different than Cruise's:
"I wouldn't have done it that big. I wouldn't have, you know, pulled people out. You're in a position of power and it's tricky, right? You do have a responsibility for everybody else and he's absolutely right about that. And, you know, if the production goes down, a lot of people lose their jobs. People have to understand that and have to be responsible. It's just not my style to, you know, to take everybody to task that way.
I understand why he did it. He's not wrong at all about that. You know, I just, I don't know that I would have done it quite that personally, but I don't know all the circumstances so maybe he had it 10 or 15 times before."
Clooney does a pretty good job of encompassing both sides of the current debate raging on social media regarding Cruise's outbursts. On the one side, a lot of people understand the pressure Cruise is feeling to keep his business (making big movies) going and keep people employed. A lot of people similarly feel (and echo) Cruise's frustration with people not adhering to the advised protocols for COVID-19 - no matter how minor those infractions may be. There's a real sector of people who feel fed up with sticking dutifully to the rules, and still being affected by others not doing the same.
On the other side, people argue that Cruise was overstepping in terms of authority. They think Cruise was creating a hostile work environment, if not outright abusing employees who hold far less influence than he does. Others don't like the sense of entitlement that seems to come with Cruise's aggressive stance.
Of course, it must be noted that Tom Cruise isn't just a headlining star: he produces and helps finance these films. It's his money and business on the table.
Mission: Impossible 7 will be in theaters on November 19, 2021.