Tom Cruise reveals crazy “speed flying” stunt from Mission Impossible 7

Tom Cruise in Mission: Impossible 7Paramount Pictures

Tom Cruise is at it again — ahead of Mission: Impossible 7, he’s revealed his “speed flying” stunt that he had to train for several years to pull off.

He’s bore the brunt of an exploding fish tank, climbed a cliff with his bare hands, flung himself around the Burj Khalifa, clung onto the side of a plane as it takes off, fell to Earth from 30,000ft, and drove off the side of a cliff on a motorbike into a base jump.

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Cruise doesn’t take his movie star status lightly: he does things for real, and he clearly feels the need not only for speed, but to up the ante with every M:I installment, and Dead Reckoning Part 1 looks like his biggest achievement in stunts to date.

We’re fast approaching the seventh movie’s release, and the actor has just revealed another extraordinary set piece with one of the “most dangerous sports in the world”: speed flying.

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Tom Cruise shares insane “speed flying” footage from Mission Impossible 7

In a breathtaking behind-the-scenes featurette shared by Cruise on Twitter, we see him preparing for the movie’s speed flying stunt alongside Christopher McQuarrie and the crew.

Speed flying is a sport in which paragliders descend mountains and great heights at an incredibly fast pace, often spiraling through the air and coming in very hot as they land — we’re talking 80km per hour.

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“To shoot these stunts for Mission: Impossible, with Tom there are no limits — so we become a little bit more adventurous every time,” McQuarrie says. “While it may look similar, speed flying is not sky diving — sky diving is fairly predictable, speed flying is incredibly unpredictable.”

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It was too dangerous to try and get a helicopter or a drone close to Cruise, so they developed a gimbal to capture the footage. However, the landing had to be perfect: Cruise had to touch down facing the camera, and the slightest crosswind could throw him off and put him on a deadly collision course with a cliff face, a vehicle, or even just the ground. “Flying very close to rocks looks quite beautiful. Behind the scenes, we were all in absolute terror,” McQuarrie adds.

Of course, he pulled it off in the end — and don’t expect him to slow down any time soon. When asked if the danger bothers him, he told CNN: “I just don’t mind it. I don’t mind that feeling — I kinda like that feeling. I like to see [when] you prepare for something and you’re like, ‘What’s gonna happen?'”

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Mission: Impossible — Dead Reckoning Part 1 hits cinemas on July 10 in the UK and July 12 in the US. Find out more about the movie here.