Paramount Pictures have halted production on Mission: Impossible 6 after Tom Cruise broke his ankle while performing a stunt, on set in London.
Cruise hit his right foot against a wall as he jumped between two high-rise buildings, while wearing a harness.
The film’s director, Christopher McQuarrie, who also directed the previous installment of the franchise, tweeted that his star was “on the mend” and “in very good spirits.”
In an interview for Empire Magazine, McQuarrie said the 55-year old was meant to “slam into the side of the building” and climb up onto the roof, rather than make a clean jump, to add to the energy of the stunt, but on the fourth take, his foot hit the wall at the wrong angle. McQuarrie said he would “move heaven and earth” to get that fourth take into the film.
His comments – and the statement from Paramount – were the first confirmation that the star had hurt himself after a video, featured on the TMZ website, appeared to show him limping off set.
In recent years, Cruise has become known for doing his own stunts, despite being one of the most bankable Hollywood stars, something insurance companies might now be prompted to reassess. He clambered around the outside of the world’s tallest building in Mission: Impossible Ghost Protocol and clung to the outside of a cargo plane in the most recent film in the franchise, Rogue Nation.
The incident comes three years after the shooting schedule of another blockbuster, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, was disrupted when one of its stars, Harrison Ford, broke a leg on set at Pinewood Studios. And it’s come in the same week that a stunt woman was killed, while filming Deadpool 2 in Vancouver.
Insurers will be wincing at the news that a star of Cruise’s stature can be injured on set and at the prospect of additional costs from the likely over-run of the production schedule. There’s no indication how long the delay might be. The Hollywood journal Variety said it could be anywhere between 6 weeks and 3 months before Cruise is well enough to continue.
But Paramount says the film is still on target for its original release date of 27th July 2018, despite having about two months left to shoot. In its statement, it also said, “Tom wants to thank you all for your concern and support and can’t wait to share the film with everyone next summer.”