Tom Cruise held his breath for an astounding 6 minutes in this crazy underwater stunt in the new 'Mission: Impossible'
You probably thought Cruise couldn't top climbing the tallest building in the world in "Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol"in 2011 - but you'd be wrong.
But according to the film's stunt coordinator, Wade Eastwood, that wasn't the stunt he was most concerned about Cruise taking on himself.
At a key moment in the movie, Cruise, playing IMF agent Ethan Hunt, has to dive into an underwater safe to retrieve the computer chip that will lead him closer to the film's villain. Along with having to hold his breath the whole time, he also must keep away from a large crane that's circling around the safe.
The stunt first required Cruise to jump off a 120-foot ledge (the bottom was all CGI, but he really did the jump).
Eastwood (no relation to Clint) had worked previously with Cruise on "Edge of Tomorrow," so he was aware of Cruise's obsession with authenticity when it comes to stunt work. But he still marvels over Cruise's physical ability.
"It's been said in other interviews, if he wasn't an actor he would have been a great stunt man," said Eastwood. "The difference between Tom and a stunt man is he acts the character after hearing 'action.' A stunt person just does the stunt to double the character."
And that is the aspect that made Eastwood's job to pull off the underwater scene the most challenging.
Though they had cameras all over the set monitoring the star as he was underwater, and stunt crews at the ready to jump into action if anything went wrong, Eastwood said Cruise still had to act in the scene. This meant it needed to look like he was losing breath and becoming unconscious.
Eastwood said the longest Cruise was underwater for a take was over six minutes.
Eastwood recalls Cruise telling him one time after having the actor come up for air, "I got plenty of breath, trust me. I don't want to die."
The scene took two weeks to shoot, according to Eastwood. But training for it started two months before production began.
To prepare Cruise for an underwater scene in which he'd be holding his breath for over six minutes, Eastwood brought in a freediving record holder to teach the actor breathing exercises. Basically, as Eastwood explains, teaching your mind "that you don't have to take a breath."
Eastwood said Cruise even blacked out a few times during the training.
"That's how you learn your limits," Eastwood said.
That was another concern of Eastwood's - what if Cruise got too into character?
"It's a very calming and surreal state being underwater, especially when you're holding your breath for that long," he said. "You've gone through training to let your mind to that place where you can control it. It's dangerous because you get carried away in the acting and you get in such a euphoric and relaxed state being in character that you forget what you're doing. That was my worry."
Thankfully, Cruise kept his head together and pulled off a scene that's agonizingly claustrophobic yet remarkable to watch.
And that's after seeing him hang from a moving plane.
- Xiaomi is worried that investigations in India might affect it cash flows, operating results
- Delhi and Kolkata are the two most polluted cities in the world: Report
- There is a yawning gap between the confidence of consumers and businesses
- TikTok’s in-app browser on iOS includes code that can monitor your keystrokes and taps
- Couch and Surf: What’s streaming on OTT this weekend?