The idea of de-aging Tom Cruise for the opening sequence of “Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning” was seriously considered by director Christopher McQuarrie. Despite Cruise’s seemingly ageless appearance in his films, McQuarrie contemplated using de-aging technology as a gimmick in the new movie.
The concept of de-aging recently gained attention with the latest Indiana Jones film, where 81-year-old Harrison Ford’s age was visually reversed. At 61 years old, Cruise didn’t require such treatment. However, the sequence in which de-aging would have been used would have taken place more than three decades ago.
McQuarrie explained to GamesRadar that he ultimately decided against de-aging in “Mission: Impossible” due to inconsistent results from the process. Additionally, seeing a younger version of the Ethan Hunt character proved distracting for him.
“In the original plan, there was a whole sequence at the beginning of the movie set in 1989,” McQuarrie shared. “We considered it as a cold open, as well as flashbacks within the film. We explored de-aging technology.”
While researching the de-aging process, McQuarrie found that some results were impressive while others fell short. However, he discovered that he was more focused on the actor’s appearance rather than following the story. Seeing an actor he had known for a long time suddenly transformed into a young person proved to be a significant distraction.
For this particular film, de-aging didn’t fit the vision. Nevertheless, McQuarrie doesn’t completely rule it out for future projects. He acknowledged that he had cracked the code on how to approach it effectively and remains open to revisiting the de-aging process. “We may still play with it. We never say never,” he added.