Tom Cruise Locked For ‘All You Need Is Kill’ Adaptation

Published 3 years ago by , Updated February 15th, 2014 at 8:47 pm,

Word that Warner Bros. was looking at Tom Cruise as the potential star of the All You Need Is Kill comic book adaptation – a project previously said to have been re-titled We Are Mortals – popped up a couple months ago (from the time of writing this). The bankable star has at last agreed to headline the sci-fi/action flick.

Doug Liman (The Bourne Identity) has long been attached to helm the All You Need Is Kill movie, but was previously looking to make the expensive sci-fi thriller Luna his next directorial project. Now that the latter is no longer being co-financed by Skydance, it has been put on the backburner – freeing up Liman to press ahead with his manga-based film instead.

The original All You Need Is Kill┬ástoryline revolves around a young Japanese soldier who joins the army, in order to participate in a war against an invading alien force. However, when the young man is killed in battle, he finds himself reborn each morning, ready to fight (and die) on the same day again. In other words, it’s an action-packed sci-fi variation on Groundhog Day – or, rather, Source Code, minus the human-designed technological component that allows the main character to re-experience time over and over.

Dante Harper (the upcoming Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters) penned the original draft of the All You Need Is Kill film adaptation’s script. Variety says that Harper’s screenplay is currently being retooled by Joby Harold, so that the main character fits the age of 49-year-old Cruise.

Harold, for the record, was the writer-director of the much-derided 2007 Hayden Christensen psycho-thriller Awake. Make of that what you will.

Cruise will headline the 'All You Need Is Kill' adaptation.

Source Code, as it were, was scripted by Ben Ripley – a fellow whose previous writing credits (ex. Species III and Species: The Awakening) also didn’t exactly inspire much confidence. While that final product was ultimately well-liked by professional and casual moviegoers alike, the film has also (fairly) been criticized as a movie that doesn’t fully deliver on the potential of its premise (see: our Source Code review for more details).

Getting to the point: Liman has likewise often been cited as a capable filmmaker who nonetheless has failed to fully capitalize on the ingenious ideas and concepts behind many of his projects – be it still well-received titles such as Mr. and Mrs. Smith and Fair Game or a less-than-popular flick such as Jumper. So, one has to wonder if history will repeat itself (pun not intended) and Liman’s All You Need Is Kill adaptation will be a decent, but somewhat underwhelming action flick.

That said – most would agree that Cruise still has what it takes to be a great action hero onscreen (see: early footage of him in the upcoming Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol). So, his involvement with Liman’s new project reads all the more as being a good thing, in that regard.


The All You Need Is Kill adaptation (which may still be titled We Are Mortals) is expected to begin production by the last quarter of 2012, after Cruise completes his work on director Joseph Kosinski’s Oblivion movie.

Source: Variety

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  1. I have loved Tom Cruise and his performances ever since he hit the screen as a young man. It’s amazing to me that he has been able to “trump” Hollywood and their view of him. The ONLY other actor out there that has talent like his is Hayden Christensen. I hope they cast Hayden in this flick with Tom, what a great duo!

    • I was agreeing with you until you got to Christensen. When he failed to really capture Anakin Skywalker, I thought maybe it was because of Lucas, but then he starred in other movies and his acting was dreadful in those as well. I would put Christensen on the same level as Channing Tatum.

      • Although Christensen was brilliant in “Shattered Glass” and Tatum was really good in “Fighting”.

        It may have been that both parts just happened to be within the range of each actor.

        • I never saw Shattered Glass but I would have to disagree about Fighting; I found that movie horrible. Fighting should have been more like Warrior.

      • I think you are incorrect about Hayden Christensen. I believe STRONGLY that it was George Lucas’s direction. After all, ANY director who can make the great Samuel L. Jackson look wooden, just doesn’t know what he’s doing with actors skill-sets. The reviews for both Samuel L. Jackson and Hayden Christensen AND, for that matter, Ewan McGregor were the exact same “abysmal acting” to quote a Hollywood paper! I was even shocked to see Sam’s “acting” in Star Wars, I mean really would he say “take a seat young Skywalker” or would he answer the challenge of “What?!” Lucas just obtains good actors but he just doesn’t know what on earth to DO with them as far as directing!

      • John, see my comment below, I think you’ll know what I mean.

  2. Since this is not as hard driven as AKIRA and seems to be somewhat on the right track of it’s manga. I may want to watch this.

    • Just a quick correction, That Guy–it’s not a manga–it’s an actual novel. I should know, since I bought it and I’ve read it and re-read since. It’s a very good book–short, but it moves fast and is an exciting read. Check it out–you will not be disappointed.

  3. At any rate I have few “favorite actors” and Tom Cruise, Hayden Christensen and Samuel L. Jackson are on the top of the heap. Early on in Tom’s career all the reviewers deemed him a poor actor and he’s never won an academy award but he’s the best dam action actor out there presently. Hayden has all the aspects that Tom has, his stunt skills are exceptional. More than that, he has shown (at 19 years old in Life As A House) that he has what it takes to “stretch himself” out there and now that he’s thirty, he will add his maturity to that and the mix will be undeniable. AT ANY RATE, I certainly am looking forward to seeing Tom in this new movie and the one he’s got coming out in December! I really wish Tom and Hayden Christensen (and for that matter – Samuel L. Jackson) would be in the SAME movie together!

  4. Just great, more racism from Hollywood.

    • How, exactly?