Once upon a time, before Marvel Studios was a thing, before Cinematic Universes were all the rage, and long before superheroes became the hottest thing in Hollywood, Tom Cruise was going to do an Iron Man movie. Yes, he was going to star in it as Tony Stark, and he was going to produce it. That film never came to be, and there’s plenty of gossip about why it fell apart- including a juicy bit of bochinche that he wanted his face to be visible at all times in the Iron Man suit- but one thing is clear: That was the first and only time you’ve ever heard Cruise’s name pop up anywhere near a comic book production.
Why is that?
Considering Cruise has been one of the most bankable stars in Hollywood for 30 years, and so many of his peers have been enlisted to star in some rather prestigious comic book films, why hasn’t one of the most recognizable actors in the world flirted with a superhero flick post-Iron Man?
It seems he’s just not interested. In an interview with Jimmy Kimmel, Cruise makes it seem like his interest in the genre began and ended with Iron Man. When asked if he’s had any conversations with Marvel or DC about signing on for a comic book movie, here’s what Cruise said:
“No. Look, I really enjoy those films a lot, I enjoy them. But I- you know- I make the Mission [Impossible movies] and [Jack Reacher], and just different kinds of films.”
Anyone that’s followed Cruise’s career knows that he prefers his action flicks to be more character-based, personal affairs. They also know that Cruise is big on doing his own stunts and things having a more practical, tactile, natural feel. So it should come as no surprise that signing on for one of these big, flashy, CG-heavy superhero romps may not be up his alley.
Back in the day, it was rumored that his Iron Man film would’ve tackled “Demon In A Bottle” elements, and been a character-driven film about Tony Stark overcoming his demons and finding salvation in the Iron Man suit. Since this was before the era of shared universes, it would’ve been a much more intimate film, and an exploration of who Stark- the man- was.
Can you think of a character he’d be perfect for? One that would require a movie that’s more in-line with Cruise’s tastes? Or are you fine with him sitting out the genre and focusing on films like Jack Reacher: Never Go Back and Edge of Tomorrow?