Tom Cruise Drops Out of MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E. to Focus on MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 5

     May 24, 2013

tom-cruise-the-man-from-u-n-c-l-e

In a rather unexpected development, director Guy Ritchie’s adaptation of the popular TV series The Man from U.N.C.L.E. has lost its leading man.  Tom Cruise was originally set to star in the Warner Bros. spy pic, which is being planned as a potential franchise-starter, but with a fall production start-date looming Cruise has now vacated the starring role in order to focus his efforts on getting Mission: Impossible 5 off the ground. The film had recently started filling out its cast with Armie Hammer signing on to co-star and Alicia Vikander (Anna Karenina) entering talks to play the film’s female lead, but Ritchie must now start searching to fill his leading role .  Hit the jump for more on the future of both U.N.C.L.E. and Mission: Impossible 5.

man_from_uncle_tv_show_image_01Warner Bros.’ adaptation of The Man from U.N.C.L.E. has had a rather troubled development process.  Steven Soderbergh was initially planning to direct with George Clooney being eyed for the lead role, but Clooney opted not to sign on for fear of exacerbating his back problems with the film’s action-heavy demands.  Actors like Bradley Cooper and Channing Tatum were subsequently eyed to topline the pic, but Soderbergh eventually left the project altogether when Warner Bros. refused to provide him with the budget necessary to fulfill his vision.

Ritchie signed on to produce and direct The Man from U.N.C.L.E. in December of 2011, and the project was finally on track to start production this year before Cruise’s abrupt exit.  Deadline reports that Cruise decided to leave U.N.C.L.E. in order to focus his efforts on producing and starring in Mission: Impossible 5, which he wants to get in front of cameras before the end of the year.  The M:I franchise is Cruise’s baby and he has always been heavily involved in the development, planning, and production of each film.  As such, it would be, well, implausible for him to prep for and shoot The Man from U.N.C.L.E. later this fall while also remaining hands-on in all things Mission: Impossible 5 before that film goes in front of cameras.

With Iron Man 3 screenwriter Drew Pearce recently tapped to pen the screenplay for Paramount’s Mission: Impossible 5 and Cruise’s Jack Reacher helmer Christopher McQuarrie expected to direct, it’s clear that things are moving full-speed ahead on the sequel.  Brad Bird’s fourth installment, Ghost Protocol, will be a tough act to follow, but clearly Cruise is focused on making M:I 5 the best film it can be, even if that means sacrificing prior commitments.

Warner Bros. will now focus on replacing Cruise quickly in order to keep Man from U.N.C.L.E. on track for a 2013 production start-date.  Hammer is still onboard to play a version of the role played by David McCallum in the TV series, and I’m interested to see who Ritchie ropes in as Cruise’s replacement.  Could one of his Sherlock Holmes cohorts like Robert Downey Jr. or Jude Law step in, or will it be another A-lister entirely? We should hear firm word sooner rather than later.

tom-cruise-mission-impossible-5

Around The Web

Latest News

SAN ANDREAS Writer Carlton Cuse on Action, Why Dwayne Johnson Is Undervalued, and More

The co-writer also talks about which parts of the script he most heavily influenced, his personal connection to the story, and more.

Will the First TRANSFORMERS Spinoff Feature Bumblebee?

Hasbro’s CEO thinks the character thinks the cute Autobot can carry his own brand/movie.

DEADPOOL Wraps Filming; Pulls a SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION to Mark the Occasion

Ryan Reynolds sends out a tweet to announce the production’s latest development.

POINT BREAK Gets Reimagined in New Featurette Celebrating The Extreme Stunts

Go behind the scenes of the impressive stuntwork with a new featurette for Warner Bros. 'Point Break' remake.

KUNG FURY: Insane 80s Throwback Action Comedy Released Online

David Sandberg's over-the-top homage features Arcade-robots, ninjas, vikings, Hitler, and The Hoff.

Will Forte Joins Key and Peele Movie KEANU; Plot Details Revealed

Key and Peele play friends who decide to pose as gangsters in order to retrieve their stolen cat.

ALOHA Review

Say ‘goodbye’ to Cameron Crowe’s latest film and possibly his career.

SAN ANDREAS Review

It’s not “The Rock vs. The Earthquake”; It’s “Dwayne Johnson and an Earthquake”, and that’s good enough despite a selfish “hero”.

Make-Up Legend Rick Baker Is Retiring; Cites Studios Wanting “Cheap and Fast” Over Quality

We've not only lost an icon, but an entire artform is in danger of becoming extinct.

Director Kyle Newman Talks BARELY LETHAL, His PG-13 Battle, Assembling the Cast, and More

Plus his thoughts on High School movies, his first cut, and doing the film independently.

Page 1 of 3,97012345...102030...Last »