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During a film like The Mummy, there usually comes a time when the two main characters find themselves in a quiet moment of contemplation. They realize their perilous experiences together have brought them into love's path, and they passionately embrace and kiss. Well, that's not what happened between Tom Cruise and co-star Annabelle Wallis in director Alex Kurtzman's initial foray into Universal's Dark Universe, and for very specific reasons. Wallis explains that Cruise just really wasn't feeling like making out with his co-star on that day of filming. Wallis explained the awkward experience on an episode of Conan recently, noting:
It was a very sad day for Annabelle. Again, there was another amorous moment, a little kissing scene. And I got to set and was like, 'This is an amazing moment.' I would tell all my friends, my children, about this kissing scene with Tom Cruise. And I arrive on set and am like c'mon Tom, it's about to be the best day of your life. And then he goes, 'Yeah about that. Alex, can we have a chat? I'm not feeling that. I'm not feeling the kissing scene.' And he talked himself out of kissing me in front of 900 people. Can you imagine what I felt like? Not good.
No matter how you felt about The Mummy, you kind of have to feel sorry for Wallis in this scenario, as she was building up to what she thought would be a big moment in the film, only to have her hopes dashed by a strange and untimely script conference between Tom Cruise and Alex Kurtzman. This instance only confirms the reports of Cruise having a pretty effective hold on the creative controls involved with this project, as it seems probable that Tom would be the only person to have the desire and/or power to do such a thing. But when you really think about it, Cruise's decision really may have helped the movie out.
The fact that this kissing scene between Annabelle Wallis and Tom Cruise actually may have helped the film's plot move forward, as the supposed romance between Wallis' Jenny and Cruise's Nick actually doesn't feel like it would have changed the film all that much. As the film currently stands, the connection between the two characters isn't terribly drenched in romantic meaning, with the action taking more of a front seat. So cutting the kiss Wallis mentioned on Conan corrects the previously predictable course that The Mummy was headed for, and instead leaves the potential relationship between the two characters unfulfilled. Although the moment on set was clearly not great for Wallis, from my view, Tom's eye on the story seems pretty keen.
Still, all of the script notes in the world don't make up for the fact that Annabelle Wallis was looking forward to a make out scene with one of the last verifiable old school movie stars this business has to offer. And considering the fact that it's Tom Cruise breaking the promise, we can't help but feel sorry for her as well. Should Wallis have more control over her next film role, perhaps she'll be able to negotiate a clause that sees all kissing scenes go through her and not her co-star.