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The following story contains spoilers for Mission: Impossible -- Fallout, so stop reading now if you haven't yet seen the movie. And GO see that movie!!
The Mission: Impossible crew is getting used to close calls. And while Tom Cruise has now gone on record with CinemaBlend to say he'd never kill Ethan Hunt on screen -- NEVER -- there was a moment during Fallout when I thought they were going to dispose of Simon Pegg's beloved analyst-turned-field-agent, Benji. So, I asked Christopher McQuarrie point blank if there ever was a version of this script where he let Benji die. And he replied, with a devilish grin:
There is always a version where everybody dies. We talk about it every time. And we talk about every character dying. No one is safe. And then, of course, the first thing you do is go, 'Well, you can't kill Benji! The movie will never recover from that!' But a lot of people online are asking me, 'What happens to Benji in this movie?' So...
Somehow, I knew in my soul that Chris McQuarrie diligently goes through the process of weighing each and every death in the franchise, knowing that each one will cause repercussions. As he told us in a separate conversation -- about possibly killing Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) off on screen -- any character can die... so long as it means something.
Simon Pegg disagrees. He says that it's totally against the rules to kill off Benji in a Mission: Impossible movie, opening up to CinemaBlend:
I don't know if that's ever going to happen. If it does, I'll play it with as much heart... I'm glad he didn't. But apparently that's not allowed to happen just yet. ... I said [to McQ], 'Who dies in this one?' And at one point, very early on, he goes, 'Everybody but you and Ilsa.' [laughs] And I was like, 'Really?!'
It's not that people DON'T die in a Mission: Impossible movie. We fully expect that Fallout will be the last time that we see Alec Baldwin's IMF agent in a sequel. Henry Cavill's double-crossing John Lark took him out, and I imagine that he is staying dead. But to hear Simon Pegg's take on the finality of death in the Mission series, watch this exclusive video below:
Mission: Impossible -- Fallout has been on fire since it landed in theaters. It has won the box office charts, holding off competition from Winnie the Pooh this past frame. There will be a seventh Mission: Impossible movie, for sure. We don't know yet of Chris McQuarrie will agree to helm it. But even if he doesn't, he has blessed us with two spectacular action blockbusters in Rogue Nation and Fallout, and for that, we're forever thankful.