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Update on Tom Cruise & Doug Liman’s Space Movie

Image via Warner Bros.


Update on Tom Cruise & Doug Liman’s Space Movie


Tom Cruise has spent the previous decade producing films that allow him to indulge in his reckless stunts, such as dangling outside the world’s tallest building and flying a helicopter as if he had just looted the federal reserve. “Yeah, that makes sense,” Cruise fans all across the globe replied when it was reported that Cruise and Edge of Tomorrow director Doug Liman were joining together to produce a film set in genuine deep space.

That’s right: outer space, a location that isn’t on Earth and isn’t hampered by the planet’s annoying gravity.

Cruise has spent years in the Mission: Impossible franchise pushing the boundaries of what can be caught on film and of himself as a man, so a voyage into the stars with a camera seems like the next obvious step for him. What the picture will be about and when it will be shot is still up in the air, and Liman explains in a new interview that one of the reasons they don’t have definite plans for production is simple: space insurance.

Liman recently spoke with Collider’s Steve Weintraub about his film Locked Down, about a couple (Anne Hathaway and Chiwetel Ejiofor) who plan to loot Harrods during the COVID-19 epidemic. During the interview, Liman provided some details on the highly awaited Tom Cruise space film, including how they got the project insured in the (outer) world:

“From the first conversations that we’ve had about the film… how you insure it has been a central part of the conversations. So, we wouldn’t be talking about this movie if we hadn’t figured out a way to navigate the insurance component. So we have navigated it, but there would not have been a conversation about this movie without figuring out the insurance… it’s the same thing in Locked Down, one of the first conversations was about insurance, because of the pandemic… You can’t make a movie without having an insurance conversation. And [whether] you’re talking about going to outer space, [or] you’re talking about shooting in London in the heart of the pandemic, you know, insurance is gonna dictate whether that actually is possible.”

Liman also discussed the progress of this once-in-a-lifetime production.


“Things come out of our mouths like, we’re going to shoot this scene on Earth, or this scene won’t be shot on Earth,” Liman said. “That just gets uttered casually and often during prep meetings. That’s not lost on me, and I don’t think it’s lost on Tom. I think the reason that Tom is such a superstar is, as much as we’re talking about making a movie not on Earth, I think Tom very much has both of his feet planted on the ground. And more than anyone I’ve ever worked with, he appreciates the extraordinary opportunity he has to go make movies.”

It’s unclear what kinds of rates or discussions would be necessary for a production in space, but we can only image how many zeroes would have to be added to that check. To that end, despite a prior claim that the space movie will begin in October 2021, Liman refused to commit to a 2021 start date.

“I’m not sure any of us really know what 2021 is gonna look like yet, because of the pandemic. I have something I’m working on that I’m hoping I can shoot. But I don’t think anyone can know 100% right now.”

When asked if he intends to begin filming this movie in the next year or two, Liman answered strongly in the positive, stating, “Oh yeah. It’s not just some abstract idea. It’s a movie.” While he acknowledged that the project is currently unnamed, it’s reasonable to infer that at the very least a comprehensive treatment, if not a finished manuscript, exists. (Liman is both the director and the writer on the project.)

Whether or not you have your feet on the ground, the logistics of such a production sound intimidating. Unsurprisingly, Elon Musk is helping to make it happen, and his SpaceX spacecraft will be used to film the non-Earth sequences in the film.

According to a recent story from TMZ, Cruise and filmmaker Doug Liman are among the guests aboard the International Space Station from 2020 to 2023. The two are slated to go to the International Space Station on the SpaceX Crew Dragon rocket and spacecraft, which is scheduled to fly in October 2021.

Then there’s the inevitable reality that Liman will have to fly well beyond Earth’s atmosphere. On a rocket ship, to be precise. Something only a few humans have ever done, and something that many people would find unsettling.

“I had been to the SpaceX launch in the beginning of the summer. It scared me, imagining myself in that rocket, venturing out into unknown places,”  says Liman, who flew across the Atlantic to shoot his next picture, Lock Down. “I thought the flight would be a good first step towards getting the courage to strap myself in that rocket with Tom Cruise.”

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