Mission: Impossible 6 just brought back a familiar face, with director Christopher McQuarrie confirming Michelle Monaghan’s return to the franchise. Monaghan made her debut in the franchise in Mission: Impossible III as Ethan Hunt’s fiancé when he was taking a leave from the spy game. But once he was brought back into the world, she immediately was put in danger and was ultimately the catalyst behind the final act. While Ethan and Julia eventually married, the franchise “killed” her offscreen only to bring her back in a surprise cameo at the end of Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol.
She was not a factor in Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation and the quick look between Ethan and her at the end of Ghost Protocol appeared to symbolize closure for her character. Well, that is in fact not the case with Monaghan confirmed to return for Mission: Impossible 6.
McQuarrie confirmed this to be the case on Instagram by posting a photo of Monaghan. Considering the lack of information surrounding this announcement, it is unclear to what degree she will return for. There are many options at this point, but as the franchise continues on, it is a nice callback to some previous films. Plus, Monaghan is a very talented actress, so having her involved regardless of how big or small of a role is great.
The addition of Monaghan continues to give Tom Cruise some impressive female co-stars. Rebecca Ferguson will be returning as Ilsa Faust, while Angela Bassett, Vanessa Kirby, and Sian Brooke have all joined the franchise in varying roles. How much time these women will have together is unclear, as Julia’s return could be brief or a major plot point. This could be a chance for McQuarrie to flashback to Hunt’s happier days when he wasn’t part of IMF, or have the two reunited after their time apart.
It may not be until the marketing kicks in that more information on Monaghan’s return becomes available, but for now it is just great to see her back. Even though she only had a sizable role in one film, she left a lasting impression. With J.J. Abrams at the helm, she was able to avoid being a damsel in distress in M:I-3. Not only was her chemistry with Cruise excellent and was a major reason why the Ethan/Julia relationship worked on screen, but she also was given the opportunity to save Ethan at the end of the day. That’s a memorable sequence in the franchise, so hopefully she will get another impactful role here.
Source: Christopher McQuarrie