Tom Cruise is not messing around when it comes to coronavirus.
While on set of his newest action film in London, Mission Impossible 7, the movie star was caught lashing out at crew members for not following COVID-19 safety protocols. In an audio recording that has since gone viral, the actor, who is also producing the sure-to-be blockbuster, can be heard using expletives after he saw two crew members standing too close to each other, in violation of social distancing rules.
“If I see you do it again you’re f***ing gone,” the 58-year-old is heard saying on the recording which goes on for three and a half minutes. “We are the gold standard. They’re back there in Hollywood making movies right now because of us. Because they believe in us and what we’re doing. I’m on the phone with every f***ing studio at night, insurance companies, producers, and they’re looking at us and using us to make their movies. We are creating thousands of jobs, you motherf***ers. I don’t ever want to see it again. Ever!”
The film industry was hit particularly hard by the effects COVID-19, halting productions all over the globe and closing cinemas. According to Reuters, production on the seventh Mission: Impossible was shut down in February while filming in Italy. Filming resumed in September and moved into London in December.
“No apologies,” Cruise says to the crew members. “You can tell it to the people who are losing their f***ing homes because our industry is shut down. It’s not going to put food on their table or pay for their college education. That’s what I sleep with every night — the future of this f***ing industry!”
He continues, “I have told you, and now I want it, and if you don’t do it, you’re out. We are not shutting this f***ing movie down! Is it understood? If I see it again, you’re f***ing gone.”
While his words may see have seemed harsh, other celebs were quick to come to the Oscar nominee’s defense. In an interview with Howard Stern on Wednesday, George Clooney said Cruise “didn’t overreact.”
“He didn’t overreact because it is a problem,” the actor told Stern on the SiriusXM radio show. “I have a friend who’s an AD [assistant director] on another TV show who just had the almost exact same thing happen, with not quite as far-out a response.”.
Although he agreed that Cruise’s anger was more than warranted, Clooney said he would’ve handled it differently.
“You’re in a position of power and it’s tricky,” Clooney said. “You do have a responsibility for everybody else and he’s absolutely right about that. If the production goes down, a lot of people lose their jobs. People have to understand that and have to be responsible. It’s just not my style to, you know, to take everybody to task that way.”
When They See Us filmmaker, Ava DuVernay, took a similar stance on the matter. While she seemingly understands the emotions behind Tom’s rant, she stated it would have been a very different situation if she had done something similar.
‘If you’ve shot during the pandemic, you know the Herculean effort it is to keep a project going within Covid protocols. ‘Then some dude doesn’t wanna wear his shield? Nah. Been there. Felt the rage,” she penned on Twitter. “Also: If I did that on set, I’d be directing icing videos for the local bakery.”
Whoopi Goldberg shared her take on the tirade during the December 16 episode of The View.
“You know, some people don’t understand why he would get so angry. I get it,” said the actress talk show host. “You know, that’s his movie. And if he goes down with COVID, the movie’s done….You can get a new camera operator — no disrespect to camera operators. You can get a new sound man. But you can’t get another Tom Cruise …And if he’s looking over and can see you not doing what you’re supposed to be doing, it’s kind of like a little bit of a middle finger, in my opinion.”
Rosanna Arquette, Billy Baldwin, Hilarie Burton Morgan, Aisha Tyler, Arsenio Hall, designer Kenneth Cole and singer Boy George are just a few of the others famous faces who have publicly sided with Cruise. But it was actor Josh Gad who may have summed it best.
“Tom Cruise is correct here FYI. Sorry/Not sorry.” he simply wrote on Twitter.
And we couldn’t agree more.