Five crew members have reportedly quit the Mission: Impossible 7 production after Tom Cruise’s COVID tirade.
The Hollywood A-lister divided the internet after an audio recording of him leaked to The Sun revealed him angrily threatening staff who had flouted the strict COVID-19 safety protocols on set.
Cruise could be heard telling the offending staff: “If I see you do it again you’re f***ing gone!”.
But now The Sun is reporting that crew members at the Warner Bros. Studios in Leavesden have called Cruise on his threat — quitting before he could take the job from them.
“Tension has been building for months and this was the final straw,” a source told the publication.
“Since it became public there has been more anger and several staff have walked.”
Mission Impossible 7 has suffered a number of delays, including in October while filming in Italy when 12 people on set tested positive to the coronavirus. Production restarted two weeks ago in the UK.
George Clooney has defended the star for taking the health precautions seriously, saying he did not overreact.
“I have a friend who’s an AD on another TV show who just had the almost exact same thing happen with not quite as far out a response,” Clooney said.
“I wouldn’t have done it that big, I wouldn’t have, you know, pulled people out.
“You’re in a position of power and it’s tricky, right? You do have a responsibility for everybody else and he’s absolutely right about that.”
It is understood all crew members have been wearing masks, but Cruise flew into a rage when he spotted two staff standing less than a metre away from each other as they looked at a computer screen.
During the recording Cruise can be heard telling staff that they have a “responsibility” to Hollywood because studios are looking to the Mission Impossible production for guidance on how to safely make a movie during a pandemic.
“I’m on the phone with every f…… studio at night, insurance companies, producers, and they’re looking at us and using us to make their movies,” he said.
“We are creating thousands of jobs you motherf……”
Clooney added that people working in the film industry have to understand that responsibility, but conceded that Cruise calling out crew members “doesn’t help”.
“Everybody has their own style,” he said.