Christopher McQuarrie has one of the strangest filmographies in the industry, having won an Oscar for one of his first published screenplays, The Usual Suspects, then essentially disappearing for nearly a decade. He wrote and directed 2000's The Way of the Gun, which few people saw but at least Eric Eisenberg adored, then resurfaced in 2008 as the screenwriter for Valkyrie, the Bryan Singer-directed World War II drama that possibly even fewer people saw. Starring Tom Cruise as a eyepatch-wearing Nazi who conspired to kill Hitler, it was a far better movie than anybody seemed to give it credit for, and at least Hollywood took notice-- McQuarrie has since been hired to work on the screenplay for Mission: Impossible-- Ghost Protocol and Singer's next film, Jack the Giant Killer.

Coming up next, though, is probably McQuarrie's biggest outing yet-- an adaptation of the Lee Child's thriller One Shot, which according to Deadline is now confirmed to have Tom Cruise as a star. Cruise's casting got plenty of fans up in arms when it was first rumored back in June, but with the Mission: Impossible-- Ghost Protocol teaser looking dynamite, it's undeniable that Cruise is still the kind of action-ready movie star you want in your movie. He'll be playing a former military cop investigating a sniper case that, believe it or not, turns out to be more than it seems. They're planning to shoot in Pittsburgh in the fall, giving Cruise plenty of time to start shooting Joseph Kosinski's Oblivion early next year.

Having enjoyed Valkyrie far more than I expected to, and with a lot of cautious hope for Mission: Impossible-- Ghost Protocol, I'm still as surprised as anyone that Cruise has such staying power. One Shot sounds like a smaller thing than Mission: Impossible 4, and maybe the kind of low-key thriller Cruise might focus on as he gets older. Either way, I'm interested to see how it turns out, regardless of how wrong fans think Cruise is for the role. He's still Maverick, guys! You gotta have a little respect.

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