Why Did Tom Cruise Threaten to Fire Crew Members on ‘Mission: Impossible 7’?

Tom Cruise

Actor Tom Cruise has been caught on audio, shouting at crew members for apparently not observing social distancing measures on the set of Mission: Impossible 7.

The expletive-laden lecture includes Cruise threatening, “I don’t ever want to see it again, ever! And if you don’t do it, you’re fired, if I see you do it again, you’re f—ing gone. And if anyone in this crew does it – that’s it, and you too and you too … don’t you ever f—ing do it again.”

In an audio recording obtained and released by The Sun, the actor, who is also a producer on the film, was thought to be reacting to seeing several crew members standing too close to each other near a monitor during production. 

Cruise continued, “That’s it! No apologies. You can tell it to the people that are losing their f—ing homes because our industry is shut down. It’s not going to put food on their table or pay for their college education.”

His reaction no doubt stemmed, in part, from the continued frustration of having production on the blockbuster repeatedly pushed back in the wake of the global pandemic – a fate that has befallen multiple productions, with the release date of many others, Wonder Woman: 1984 for example, being pushed back. 

The film industry has suffered huge additional losses due to widespread cinema shutdowns as countries, particularly the UK and US struggle to contain the infectious disease. 

The production of Mission: Impossible 7 was slated to be a blueprint of sorts to show how Hollywood could operate under the “new normal” which includes strict guidelines on social distancing, limiting the number of people on set at any one time and mandating the use of masks. 

Reactions to Cruise’s outburst have been varied with some on Twitter praising the actor for taking Covid precautions seriously, especially amid a growing movement of “anti-maskers” who feel it goes against their constitutional rights to be expected to wear one. 

Wrote one user: THIS. IS. GODDAMN. BEAUTIFUL. I wish MORE people in charge would react like this to people who violate protocols or not wearing masks. If only more people saw the bigger picture that Tom is highlighting here. Good on @TomCruise. Thanks for setting an example on this, sir!

Others felt that while the message was valid, the delivery was off with another person writing: @TomCruise there are better, more powerful ways to get a point across. Def not a leader to follow [sic].” 

Five crew members have reportedly quit since the actor’s outburst, after months of mounting tension on set.

George Clooney also weighed in on the incident, speaking to radio personality Howard Stern about Cruise’s reaction. The Ocean’s Eleven star shared that he understood how serious the situation was but that he would have done things differently. “I wouldn’t have done it that big. I wouldn’t have, you know, pulled people out,” Clooney said. “You’re in a position of power and it’s tricky, right? You do have a responsibility for everybody else and he’s absolutely right about that. And, you know, if the production goes down, a lot of people lose their jobs. People have to understand that and have to be responsible. It’s just not my style to, you know, to take everybody to task that way.”

The Oscar-winner also conceded, however, that the public so far has only heard one side of the story.

Read more stories from The Latch and follow us on Facebook.