Tom Cruise as Ethan Hunt in Mission: Impossible - Fallout

In the middle of December 2020, audio emerged online of Tom Cruise yelling at crew members on the set of Mission: Impossible 7 in the United Kingdom for not following health and safety guidelines put in place for the COVID-19 pandemic. Shortly thereafter, production shut down for the remainder of 2020, but now cameras are gearing up to resume rolling for 2021. If a new report is to be believed, the Mission: Impossible 7 set now contains robots to enforce these guidelines.

According to The Sun, Tom Cruise bought two “state-of-the-art” robots to patrol the U.K. Mission: Impossible 7 set, and they’re capable of administering on-the-spot COVID tests to the staff. Here’s how a source allegedly described these gadgets to the outlet:

The robots are really sophisticated and rather intimidating. It’s like the Terminator only not as violent.

Surely I’m not alone in not expecting Tom Cruise buying Terminator-like robots to monitor COVID-19 cases for Mission: Impossible 7 to be one of the early, wild 2021 news items, right? For what it’s worth, Slashfilm has heard from its sources that there are no robots on the blockbuster’s set, although there are mechanical creations indeed capable of administering COVID-19 tests, which is frightening enough on its own. As far as Mission: Impossible 7 is concerned though, it’s possible this might be one of those ‘too-good-to-be-true’-type stories. Who knows, maybe there aren’t robots on the set yet, but they could be procured in the near future. In any case, we’ll keep you apprised if any major updates on this topic come in.

This marks just the latest chapter in the unusual saga of making Mission: Impossible 7, which is shooting back-to-back with Mission: Impossible 8. Like so many productions, Mission: Impossible 7 was hindered by the COVID-19 pandemic, resulting in principal photography not beginning until September 2020. Even before that, there was drama about the Mission: Impossible 7 looking to blow up a bridge in Poland for one of its action sequences.

As far as Tom Cruise is concerned, he’s been taking the pandemic very seriously, even if we ignore this reported purchasing of scary-sounding robots. When Mission: Impossible 7 was filming in Norway in October 2020, he reportedly dropped close to $700,000 to rent a cruise ship for the cast and crew to stay on. However, even with coronavirus regulations and measures in place, sometimes things still go wrong. Later that October, production in Italy was suspended when 12 crew members tested positive for COVID-19, leading to Cruise apparently having “crisis talks” with Mission: Impossible 7 and 8’s director, Christopher McQuarrie.

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Which brings us to mid-December 2020, when Tom Cruise was recorded yelling at two crew members he saw standing within two meters of each other. 50 people were reportedly nearby during the profanity-laced tirade, where Cruise declare that if saw people not social distancing or following the other health and safety guidelines, they would be fired. In the aftermath of the incident, five Mission: Impossible 7 crew members reportedly quit.

Mission: Impossible 7 is set to conclude filming in the U.K. later this week, and from there, the cast and crew will head to Dubai. Ethan Hunt’s next outing is currently slated for November 19, 2021, and Mission: Impossible 8 will follow on November 4, 2022. Keep track of other movies set to arrive later this year with our 2021 release schedule.

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