Universal boss Donna Langley shares an updated on Tom Cruise’s space-set movie, confirming the Mission: Impossible actor will film in outer space.
Universal Filmed Entertainment Group chairperson Donna Langley has stated the company is working to launch Tom Cruise into outer space to film a movie. The actor would tape just a segment of the film while suspended in weightlessness onboard the International Space Station. The project is still in its early stages of development and no release date, or launch date, is known yet, though it is said to reunite Cruise with Doug Liman, who previously directed the Oscar nominee in 2014’s Edge of Tomorrow and 2017’s American Made.
A certified skydiver, helicopter pilot, and world-accomplished daredevil, Cruise is known for forgoing a stuntman or CGI alternatives and taping the high-flying action himself. He famously strapped himself to the side of an ascending plane for a scene Mission Impossible * Rogue Nation and rode in fighter jets while filming Top Gun: Maverick. But breaching Earth’s gravity and filming in space would be a first for Cruise, 60. The space-bound project is tentatively in partnership with Elon Musk’s private spaceflight company SpaceX, which has piloted several crewed missions to the International Space Station.
In a taped interview with BBC, Langley explained that most of Tom Cruise’s untitled space movie is set on Earth, but Cruise’s character is needed on board the International Space Station for some late-stage heroics. The concept was first pitched back in 2020 by Cruise and his Edge of Tomorrow director Doug Liman, and it appears to be gaining legs two years later. Read Langley’s full comments below:
"Tom Cruise is taking us to space. He's taking the world to space. That's the plan. We have a great project in development with Tom, that does contemplate him doing just that. Taking a rocket up to the space station and shooting and hopefully being the first civilian to do a spacewalk outside of the space station."
How Tom Cruise’s Space Movie Would Change Filmmaking
Preparation, launch, detachment from the booster stages, docking and returning to Earth are all extremely high stakes phases of any spaceflight, which are normally staffed by astronauts who have dedicated their lives to planetary science. But space tourism is becoming increasingly accessible as the rocketry is streamlined, and private space companies overtake NASA as the predominant source of launches. Civilians have flown to space in a limited capacity, including Star Trek actor William Shatner, but Cruise would be the first to film a Hollywood feature while in space. Former NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine expressed his approval for the film’s concept and believes a Tom Cruise-led space movie shot in space would inspire the next generation of engineers and science minds.
Though the film, if actually shot in space, would be a massive achievement for Hollywood, Tom Cruise himself, and NASA, it would not be the first feature filmed in space. In 2021, two Russian actors launched to the International Space Station on board and taped a feature about a surgeon who must operate on their fellow cosmonaut before returning to Earth. The Russian movie, called The Challenge, completed filming its bit in space in just 12 days, but a typical stay onboard the International Space Station is actually about six months. It’s unclear if there would be a return flight specially scheduled for Cruise or if he would live among the astronauts for a few months, but Langley’s update makes it clear the film is moving ahead in some capacity in the near future.