Watch Tom Cruise Perform His ‘Most Dangerous Stunt’ Ever For ‘Mission: Impossible–Dead Reckoning’
The 60-year-old Cruise jumped a motorcycle off a cliff into a freefall six times for the latest “M:I” movie.
Tom Cruise’s movie stunt performances are so insane, they’re worthy of their own mini docs.
Paramount Pictures recently released a behind-the-scenes look at “The Biggest Stunt in Cinema History,” featuring Cruise jumping a motorcycle off a cliff for Mission: Impossible–Dead Reckoning Part One.
“This is far and away the most dangerous thing we’ve ever attempted,” said the 60-year-old actor. “We’re going to shoot it in Norway and it will be a motorcycle jump off a cliff into a base jump. I’ve been wanting to do it since I was a little kid.”
Cruise trained intensely for the feat. He completed 500 sky dives so he’d be comfortable finding cameras in freefall. Cruise also became proficient at motocross, completing 13,000 jumps, some of which were over 70- to 80-foot tabletops.
“You tell him something, and he just locks it in,” base jumping coach Miles Daisher said. “His sense of spatial awareness, he’s the most aware person I’ve ever met.”
“I have to get so good at this that there’s just no way that I miss my marks,” Cruise added. And even if he does his part right, capturing it on camera presents another set of obstacles.
“Coming up with the stunt is only one of the technical challenges,” said director Christopher McQuarrie. “The other is putting a camera in place that you can see where Tom is doing it.”
“Finding the right lens, the right platform, the right medium. Even two years ago, the cameras didn’t exist that would allow us to do what we are trying to do today,” McQuarrie added.
With base jumping and motocross skills honed, Cruise began training on a replica of the jump, launching himself off ramp into a quarry filled with impact-absorbing cardboard boxes. Multiple 3D models were used to calculate his trajectory, and data provided by a GPS tracker rigged to Cruise was used to plan the real jump.
“The only things you really have to avoid while doing a stunt like this is serious injury or death,” joked stunt coordinator Wade Eastwood.
“You’re riding a motorcycle, which is pretty dangerous, on top of a ramp that’s elevated off the ground, so if you come off the ramp, that’s going to be pretty bad. If you don’t get a clean exit form the bike…if you don’t open your parachute, you’re not going to make it.”
After a near-perfect first attempt, Cruise said, “I think I can hold to the bike a little longer.” In total, he did the stunt six times.
“This is far and away the most dangerous stunt we have ever attempted,” McQuarrie said. “The only thing that scares me more is what we have planned for Mission 8.”
Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One is set to be released in theaters on July 13, 2023.