Logic would dictate that Tom Cruise and the U.S. Navy would be ecstatic over their recent shared success with 2022's "Top Gun: Maverick" and both would be happy as each moved on with their respective lives.
Except that's not the case. Variety reports that Cruise and director Christopher McQuarrie are shooting flight scenes for "Mission: Impossible -- Dead Reckoning Part Two" on an aircraft carrier in the Adriatic Sea. Cruise flew into Bari, which is the capital of Italy's Apulia region, on Feb. 25, 2023, and checked into the five-star Hotel Delle Nazioni.
How do we know this? We can thank the big mouth of Antonio Parente, head of the Apulia Film Commission. Parente told Variety that the next day, Cruise jumped on a helicopter and flew to a shooting location onboard an aircraft carrier, "which is probably the U.S.S. George H.W. Bush, but we are not sure," Parente said.
Let's take a moment to note that the heads of film commissions in popular shooting locations like New Mexico, Louisiana, and Georgia are spilling the details about who is shooting in their respective states. Paramount, Cruise and McQuarrie are almost certainly not pleased with the gossip.
But let's not let that stop us from getting more details from Mr. Parente. The loose-lipped film commission chief said that the boat was "somewhere between Italy and Croatia" when Cruise boarded and that the actor and producer is expected to finish shooting by the end of the week.
"We are proud that [the] Apulia [region] has been chosen as the operational base for this rather complex shoot," Parente continued. Realizing that he might have said too much, he hastened to add that the Apulia Film Commission had worked with Paramount Italia but only provided help with airport logistics for the "Mission: Impossible" shoot.
If Mr Parente is correct about the carrier, the USS George H.W. Bush (CVN-77) is a Nimitz-class supercarrier and the last built in the series. Launched in 2006 and deployed in 2011, the carrier has spent its career so far crossing the Atlantic and the crew participated in strikes against ISIS in 2017.
The ship launched from Norfolk, Virginia, in August 2022 and was reported headed to the Mediterranean Sea to relieve the USS Harry S. Truman in the region. If everyone has their facts straight, it's likely that "M:I 8" has been filming on the USS GHW Bush.
Of course, everyone will have to wait to find out exactly what happens, because "Mission: Impossible -- Dead Reckoning Part Two" won't open in theaters until June 28, 2024.
We'll all be able to see "Mission: Impossible -- Dead Reckoning Part One" this summer on July 14, 2023. We'll predict that Cruise's Ethan Hunt character will be alive at the end of that one, and that odds are high that we'll get to see his superspy pilot a jet in 2024.
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