Tom Cruise Signs Movie Deal with Warner Bros.

Warner Bros. Discovery is about to save a lot of money on stunt men. In a press release today, the studio announced that it is partnering with Tom Cruise to “develop and produce original and franchise theatrical films starring Cruise in 2024.” Cruise’s production company (which I learned today is no longer Cruise/Wagner and hasn’t been for longer than I care to admit) will have offices on the Warner Bros. Discovery lot. Other outlets have noted that this is not a first-look deal, meaning Cruise is free to make movies with other studios, such as his Mission: Impossible films with Paramount and that space movie he’s developing with Universal and Elon Musk. Some of Cruise’s most famous films – Risky Business, Interview With the Vampire, Eyes Wide Shut, Magnolia, Edge of Tomorrow – were made with Warner Bros. None of the projects he’ll be developing under the new deal have been announced yet.

After a series of high-profile flops (and, to be fair, Barbie), Warner Bros. desperately needed a win, and this announcement is a big one. Perhaps more than any other studio (except maybe MGM), Warner Bros. brings to mind classic Hollywood, and while the movie industry is, to put it mildly, struggling in the modern era, it’s a good bet for them to lean into that history. Partnering with Tom Cruise is the perfect way to do that, as Cruise has made old-fashioned entertainment his brand, especially lately. Of course, a lot rests on the movies Cruise will make with WB; they need some real hits, movies that do Top Gun: Maverick business as opposed to Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Formerly Part One. I’ll bet they’re cursing their bad luck for not getting to that space-filmed movie before Universal. But from the sounds of this press release, I’d guess they have a few things up their sleeve; they wouldn’t specify “franchise films” if something weren’t already cooking. I look forward to hearing more about what Cruise and Warner Bros. have in store for us.

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