Mission: Impossible 7 trailer reveals classic character will return with a twist

Henry Czerny as Eugene Kittridge in Mission: Impossible 7Paramount Pictures

Tom Cruise defies death in the first teaser trailer for Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One, which also reveals a returning fan-favourite character from Ethan Hunt’s past. 

Cruise’s daredevilry has escalated across the Mission: Impossible franchise: in Ghost Protocol, he climbed the Burj Khalifa; in Rogue Nation, he clung to the side of an airplane as it took off; and in Fallout, he did a real-life HALO jump – and that’s before we get to his antics in a helicopter.

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In the new teaser for the seventh entry, the first of two climactic parts, Cruise runs, drives, runs some more, and flings himself off a cliff on a motorbike.

But that’s not the greatest cause for excitement, particularly for the longstanding fans of the IMF’s adventures: Kittridge is back, and he’s going to make Hunt very upset.

Tom Cruise and Henry Czerny in Mission: Impossible.Paramount Pictures
Tom Cruise and Henry Czerny in Mission: Impossible.

Kittridge returns in first trailer for Mission: Impossible 7

For the uninitiated, Henry Czerny first played Eugene Kittridge in Brian de Palma’s Mission: Impossible, released back in 1996.

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In the original film, Kittridge was the head of the IMF (Impossible Mission Force, obviously), and tasked Hunt, Jim Phelps (Jon Voight), and their team with apprehending the thief of a list detailing every covert operative in Eastern Europe.

As a result of skullduggery and bad luck, Kittridge believes Hunt to be an IMF mole, accusing him of “bribing, cajoling and killing.” Of course, he’s proven wrong in the end, and he’s not been seen in any of the sequels – until now.

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Kittridge may be one of many villains in Dead Reckoning Part One

Kittridge’s raspy, world-weary voice opens the teaser, telling Hunt: “Your days of fighting for the so-called greater good are over. This is our chance to control the truth; the concepts of right and wrong for everyone for centuries to come.

“You’re fighting to save an ideal that doesn’t exist. Never did. You need to pick a side.”

It’s a powerful monologue, and it’s delivered with a bit of antagonistic flair, but it’s unconfirmed whether he’ll be a friend or foe to Hunt. There are glimpses of other characters which appear to be villains: Shea Wigham’s Jasper Briggs puts some green gas grenades to good use; and Pom Klementieff is genuinely terrifying.

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Teasing the circumstances surrounding his return to Slash Film, Czerny said: “One of the cool things is, what has he been doing all these years? [Director Christopher McQuarrie] wasn’t all that concerned about that. I was.

“I decided that he’d been to all the agencies on some level or other, had a good idea now of how the game is played and what his place is in this mechanism of national intelligence. I figured he’d been through all of them at this point, and he’d been schooled by Ethan 25 years ago.

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“He’s known Ethan, he’s known he’s done these things, and he knows that Ethan is someone to go to, but he also feels that it’s not ever good to have one person controlling anything.”

Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One is due to hit cinemas on July 14, 2023.

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