Mission: Impossible Director Explains Why the Next Movie Had to Be Split in Two

The Mission: Impossible franchise has become a surprisingly-formidable part of the action movie landscape, with 2018's Fallout completely exceeding a lot of fans' expectations. The Tom Cruise-led venture is set to head into an entirely new direction in 2021 and 2022, with a two-part story spanning the seventh and eighth installments of the franchise. While splitting the adventure into two films might seem lofty, writer and director Christopher McQuarrie revealed that there's some pretty good narrative reasoning behind that.

"When we went into making Fallout, I said to Tom, 'I really want to make this more of an emotional journey for [Cruise's character Ethan Hunt],'" McQuarrie explained in a recent interview on the Light the Fuse podcast. "Going into this, I said, 'I want to take what we learned from Fallout and apply it to every character in the movie. I want everyone to have an emotional arc. ... I just want the movie to have more feeling across the board."

"We realized we had a movie that was two hours, 40 minutes long," McQuarrie continued. "And every scene in it was necessary."

As he put it, he likes to think of the Mission: Impossible movies as being divided into 20-minute segments, and once he removed two of them from M:I 7, the film came together in a really profound way.

"The ending of the first movie snapped into place," McQuarrie revealed. "We knew what the ending was and we knew what the beginning was. And now I had these two sequences, which means, I've got 40 minutes of Mission: Impossible 8 figured out."

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Mission: Impossible 7 will feature the returns of Cruise, Simon Pegg, Rebecca Ferguson, Vanessa Kirby, and Henry Czerny. Hayley Atwell, Pom Klementieff, Shea Whigham, and Nicholas Hoult have all been cast in currently-undisclosed roles.

Mission: Impossible 7 will be released on November 19, 2021.

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