By Michael Arbeiter, Hollywood Staff
After his high-flying exploits over the city of Dubai paid off, and quite handsomely, Tom Cruise has opted for yet another go as Ethan Hunt. The perpetually half-grinning actor has officially signed on for a fifth movie in the Mission: Impossible franchise, as reported by Entertainment Weekly, banking once more on what seems to be his only remaining fail safe title. Alongside Cruise, rumors have circled director Christopher McQuarrie, who wrote and helmed the actor's 2012 action-heavy folly Jack Reacher. McQuarrie is not yet officially on board, but The Hollywood Reporter names him as the frontrunner for the Paramount fivequel. The modest turnout garnered by Cruise's Lee Child adaptation aside, the studio must be confident in the IMF series' consistent appeal. Cruise and McQuarrie might not have been able to sell Reacher, but they should be able to handle Ethan Hunt.
While Cruise's most recent big screen turn, Oblivion, fared well at the box office, the once stalwart movie star has seen some meager releases over the past year and change: nobody wanted to see Tom Cruise as a mountainous renegade in Jack Reacher. And even fewer people wanted to see him as a rock god in Rock of Ages. But the Mission: Impossible franchise serves as a reliable go-to for Cruise, with Ghost Protocol raking in a healthy $209 million. Newly over 50, we're wondering how long the actor can keep up with his secret agent stunts - you can bet he's going to try to top dangling from the Burj Khalifa in No. 5 - although this news, plus Cruise's casting in The Man from U.N.C.L.E., indicate that he has no intention of quieting down his act anytime soon.
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