Mission: Impossible - Fallout director Christopher McQuarrie reveals the film began shooting without a finalized script in place. After helming 2015's acclaimed Rogue Nation, the director returned to the franchise to helm its sixth installment. By all accounts, McQuarrie seems to have outdone himself. Early reactions to Fallout suggest it's one of the best action films in years, fueled by incredible set pieces and an emotional storyline that digs deep into the character of Ethan Hunt. This is one of the few movie series that gets better with age.
For good reason, McQuarrie has established himself as one of Tom Cruise's most trusted collaborators. In addition to their Mission: Impossible efforts, the two also teamed up on Jack Reacher, and McQuarrie penned the scripts for Cruise's Valkyrie and Edge of Tomorrow. Their working relationship is obviously in a strong place, because Cruise (who produces the M:I films) proceeded on Fallout with very little to go off of.
Ali Plumb of BBC Radio 1 tweeted the surprising revelation, which came from his interview with McQuarrie. The director said when the cameras started rolling, there wasn't a screenplay, just an outline. Check out Plumb's post in the space below:
The M:I franchise (and McQuarrie himself) is no stranger to twisty narratives, so it's a bit shocking to hear that they didn't have the entire script locked down when production commenced. What makes this feat more impressive is that Fallout is apparently far from a standard Hollywood action flick. Critics have cited The Dark Knight and Skyfall as comparisons, and its running time of 147 minutes makes it the longest in the series by far. There was a lot of thought and ambition behind Fallout, as Cruise and company continually try to raise the bar. It goes without saying that must have been one solid outline that covered the broad strokes of what McQuarrie was looking to accomplish - with script pages filling in other details (like lines of dialogue) coming on on set. It's worth wondering if the script was worked on during the production delay caused by Cruise's injury.
Of course, Fallout isn't the only Hollywood tentpole to do something like this. The original Iron Man famously went in front of the cameras without a completed script and relied heavily on improvisation. Fortunately for Paramount, it looks like Fallout is going to lead to similar results. Not only is it generating very positive reviews, it could potentially score M:I's biggest opening weekend domestically. Should a seventh movie be made, the principal players might feel more comfortable with a screenplay before shooting, but it's hard to argue against McQuarrie's approach here.
Source: Ali Plumb
- Mission: Impossible - Fallout (2018) release date: Jul 27, 2018