Mission: Impossible 7 & 8 are reportedly set to be the last times Tom Cruise appears in this franchise. Ever since the first Mission: Impossible installment was released in 1996, Cruise has enjoyed an incredibly successful journey as Ethan Hunt, an IMF agent. Both the series and Cruise’s character have won much more affection from fans in recent years. The phenomenon started with Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, but it was until Mission: Impossible – Fallout that the action series actually sealed its position among Hollywood’s favorites. Such significant success it achieved that Paramount gave the greenlight for two sequels, directed by Christopher McQuarrie and joined by Tom Cruise.
However, it was quite a task to pull off the plans for Mission: Impossible 7 & 8. They were supposed to shoot back-to-back in the early months of 2020, but the lockdowns caused by the COVID-19 outbreak was a hindrance for the seventh installment right from the beginning. Mission: Impossible 7’s production has wrapped, but the eighth movie is yet to start shooting. Paramount was forced to delay the movies’ premieres, which was initially in 2021 and 2022 but now has moved to 2023 and 2024. And seemingly, these sequels will be the last time audiences see Tom Cruise as Ethan Hunt.
A report from Variety says that Mission: Impossible 7 & 8 are planned as Cruise’s sendoff from the action series. The report also notes that the two installments are eyed as the peak of the franchise and Ethan Hunt’s journey in it. The plot details are still kept in secret, so it is uncertain about the threats Hunt will face in his potential final appearance. The wrap-up of Hunt’s story in Mission: Impossible 7 & 8 remains rumors, not confirmed by Paramount, McQuarrie or Cruise.
Tom Cruise’s farewell to Ethan Hunt’s spy gear will only come after he surely presents two more fascinating action blockbusters with Mission: Impossible 7 & 8. The bar of expectation has already raised for the first sequel and Cruise’s next dangerous stunt. It could also explain the installments’ bringing back so many characters from the past movies in the franchise, since concluding Ethan Hunt’s story should mean meeting again with his former pals and enemies. And of course, new characters will also be introduced, including those starred by Hayley Atwell, Pom Klementieff and more.
If Tom Cruise really makes his final appearances as Ethan Hunt in Mission: Impossible 7 & 8, a magnificent journey will come to an end. Due to the delay in the movies’ release dates, by the time Cruise hangs up Ethan Hunt’s spy gear, he will have spent thirty years playing the IMF spy. It is the incredible ride that could easily outperform other longtime cinematic roles like Robert Downey Jr.’s Iron Man or Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine. It might not be too surprising if we consider Cruise’s age, but it will surely be an emotional ride in 2024, regardless of Ethan Hunt’s ending.