The COVID-19 pandemic has completely impacted film and TV productions going forward, as studios try to figure out how to create new content amid this "new normal". Action star Tom Cruise unintentionally found a creative way to sidestep that, with news breaking earlier this year that the actor plans to film a movie entirely in outer space. The film would be a collaboration between Elon Musk's Space X and NASA, and production would take place aboard the International Space Station -- and now we know when that could potentially (literally) get off the ground. According to a new report from TMZ, a 2020 to 2023 manifest lists Cruise and director Doug Liman among the passengers on the International Space Station. The duo is expected to hitch a ride on the SpaceX Crew Dragon rocket and capsule to the ISS, which will launch in October of 2021.
The action-adventure film, which is still untitled, reportedly has a $200 million commitment from Universal Studios. Days after initial rumors around the film first began to swirl, NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine confirmed the news, arguing that projects like the film will "inspire a new generation of engineers and scientists to make NASA's ambitious plans a reality".
While the project is apparently in its early stages, it does feel pretty on-brand for Cruise, especially given his history with other stunts. Just within the Mission: Impossible franchise, he climbed the Burj Khalifa skyscraper in Ghost Protocol, hung from the side of a plane in Rogue Nation, and hung out of a helicopter in Fallout. That latter film briefly had to shut down production, when Cruise broke his ankle leaping across rooftops.
"I just [wanted to] keep going because I know I'm not doing this again," Cruise said of the stunt in a 2018 interview. "I had to go into full rehab. I had friends calling, 'Oh man, you want to come down to the south of France.' [I had to reply] 'I have got 10 to 12 hours of rehab.'"
"I spent years training for these things and I have been doing it for years. So we do everything we can possible to limit any kind of mistakes and we are very thorough about how we approach these things and calculate it," Cruise explained. "When you are going, there are times I'm not wearing a helmet and we are going high speed."
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