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Mission: Impossible 7 Eyeing a Return to Filming in September

The cast and crew of Mission: Impossible 7 have their own difficult mission ahead of them; restarting their massive, complicated shoot after production was shuttered due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Speaking with the BBC (via Deadline), first assistant director Tommy Gormley said he believed that filming would begin again in September, and be wrapped by May 2021. The film is directed once again by Christopher McQuarrie, and stars, of course, Tom Cruise as the super spy Ethan Hunt.

“We hope to start shooting again in September,” Gormley told BBC Radio 4’s Today program. “We were days from shooting in Venice — we were right at the epicenter when it all kicked off — so we had to shut down in Venice where we were four or five days from shooting. We hope to visit all the countries we planned to and look to do a big chunk of it back in the UK on the backlot and in the studio, so September through to end April/May is our targets. We are convinced we can do this.”

Meanwhile, one of the franchise’s stars, Simon Pegg, told Variety that the scenes they’ll shoot in September will be “the outdoor stuff.” “That feels fairly doable, and obviously there will be precautions put in place.”

Considering the Mission: Impossible franchise is legendary for its epic stunts, restarting production will mean tackling heady logistical and personnel issues to make sure the film is up to snuff, but also that everyone involved is safe.

“People that are involved in any close proximity stuff, it will have to be determined that they’re safe to do that,” Pegg told Variety. “I don’t know what the testing situation is, how that works, or whether they’ll be able to be tested regularly.”

Gormley told BBC Radio 4’s Today that the British Film Commission guidelines are “excellent” and that despite the major challenges of pulling off a huge film with a giant crew, this was a mission they could succeed in if they break down each procedure required very carefully.

“If we have the protocols in place and we break down all the procedures very carefully…we will get it going again,” Gormely told Today. “Some things are very challenging such as stunt scenes, crowd scenes, etcetera, but we can’t do a Mission: Impossible movie and not have a fight scene or car scenes in it.”

Gormely’s confidence that they can pull it off comes from his experience working in a highly adaptable industry. He brought up shoot for a Star Trek film in which they filmed in a brewery complex and the crew was outfitted in goggles, gloves, and other protective equipment.

“Because we were in a food factory, that’s what we did and we didn’t think twice about it,” he told Today. “We are incredibly agile and we’re used to working in the most extreme situations in the most extreme locations. We can basically tackle anything if we prepare it carefully enough. We have to get back to work for every person in the film industry, tens of thousands of us, we have to get back to work. We have to do it safely and protect our colleagues, but it is definitely possible and we’re working flat out to make it happen.”

Featured image: Tom Cruise as Ethan Hunt in MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE – FALLOUT, from Paramount Pictures and Skydance. © 2018 Paramount Pictures. All rights reserved.

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