Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Nicholas Hoult hands off the coveted job of killing Tom Cruise to Esai Morales

Illustration for article titled Nicholas Hoult hands off the coveted job of killing Tom Cruise to Esai Morales
Photo: Maury Phillips (Getty Images for GBK Productions)

Way back in January, we reported that Nicholas Hoult had signed on to play the villain in the next Mission: Impossible movie, a role that we figured would give him a chance to do succeed where so many others had failed and actually kill Tom Cruise—err, Ethan Hunt, the guy he plays in the movies. Since then, though, production on the movie was suspended due to the spread of the coronavirus, and now it’s been suspended for so long that Hoult no longer has room in his schedule for killing Cruise. There’s no word on what else Hoult will be doing, but hopefully it’s something equally exciting as a new M:I.

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According to Deadline, director Christopher McQuarrie will be replacing him with Esai Morales, who recently appeared on How To Get Away With Murder and had a run as one-eyed super-assassin Deathstroke on Titans. That gives him experience killing people and getting away with it, which seem like beneficial skills to have on this project (because he’s playing a bad guy, not because we’re making light of any particular actor’s well-known penchant for risking his life with dangerous stunts).

Speaking of (by which we mean “on a completely unrelated note”), Cruise was in the news earlier this month with the ridiculously dangerous and presumably very expensive plan to film a movie in space. Deadline says the next M:I has been slotted in for a November 19, 2021 release, so hopefully the space movie doesn’t come out before that. Nobody’s going to want to see Cruise doing regular stunts with gravity once they’ve seen him drifting helplessly in the endless frozen void of space. Err… we mean “safely performing space stunts and then calmly returning to Earth.” He’s not going to die. We would never joke about that in multiple news stories over the course of several years.

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