Tom Cruise sent a thank-you message to fans of Top Gun: Maverick in the Cruise-iest way possible: a death-defying stunt.
In a new video posted to the Paramount Pictures YouTube channel on Monday, Cruise, seen hanging out of a plane, thanks people for going to the movie theatre.
“Hey everyone,” begins Cruise, clad in goggles and earplugs. “Here we are over stunning South Africa, where we’re filming Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning, Parts 1 and 2.”
“I didn’t want the year to end without thanking you all for coming out to the theatres, and thank you for supporting Top Gun: Maverick,” said Cruise, 60.
When the camera pans to the right of Cruise, it reveals Christopher McQuarrie, the director and screenwriter of Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning, also in the plane.
McQuarrie playfully encourages Cruise to complete his stunt, and says, “We really gotta roll, we gotta get the shot.”
When Cruise asks if McQuarrie would join him for the skydive, the director replies, “Not on your life. Good luck.”
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With a single fist bump to McQuarrie, Cruise — known for doing his own movie stunts — jumps from the plane and starts his free-fall.
“Thank you for supporting Top Gun: Maverick, and as always, thank you for allowing us to entertain you. It truly is the honour of a lifetime,” Cruise says as he descends back to Earth.
After a few seconds, Cruise says he’s “running out of altitude” and wishes viewers “a safe and happy holiday.”
“We’ll see you at the movies!” Cruise smiles before saluting and spinning away from the camera toward blue water below.
In August, Top Gun: Maverick became the sixth-highest grossing film of all time at the American box office. CNBC claimed the film made US$685.1 million in the U.S. and $1.4 billion globally. It is Cruise’s first billion-dollar movie.
Also on Monday, Cruise was featured in another video on the Paramount Pictures YouTube channel. In the video, titled “The Biggest Stunt in Cinema History,” Cruise drives a motorcycle off a cliff and into a base jump.
Cruise said the stunt, which the Mission: Impossible franchise has been working on for years, is one he’s wanted to do “since I was a little kid.”
The more than nine-minute video outlines all of the technical training and research necessary for a stunt that will be seen in the seventh Mission: Impossible instalment.
Cruise said the biggest challenges in a stunt as large as this one is “finding the cameras, it’s the amount of preparations and it’s weather.”
Using a drone equipped with camera lenses, the team successfully captured footage of Cruise executing the stunt six times.
Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One will be released in theatres in July 2023.