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Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning Part One and Part Two: Release Date, Trailers, Cast & More

We break down the characters, the ensemble cast, the plot, the release date, and more.

by | July 10, 2023 | Comments


Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to watch Tom Cruise drive a motorcycle off a cliff. The seventh movie in the Mission: Impossible franchise will hit theaters this July, and it looks as though it will continue Cruise’s tradition of putting increasingly jaw-dropping, death defying stunts into each one of these action flicks. But, Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One will just be the first half of a two-part story, as the title suggests. Ahead of the premiere of the first half of Ethan Hunt’s next mission, we’ve done our own stunt work and gathered up everything you need to know about the Dead Reckoning Part One and Part Two.

When Do Parts One and Two Come Out?

 Rebecca Ferguson, Ving Rhames, Simon Pegg, and Tom Cruise in Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning Part One (2023)

(Photo by Christian Black/©Paramount Pictures)

Mission Impossible: Dead Reckoning Part One, the seventh film in the Crusie-led film adaptation of the ’60s and ’70s espionage TV series, hits theaters soon, on July 12, 2023. Fans won’t have to wait (that) long for the conclusion, as Part Two is set to premiere slightly under a year later, on June 28, 2024. However, filming on Part Two is currently paused due to the Writers Strike, so it’s quite possible that the release date will be delayed again.

Both movies will be exclusive theatrical releases — and if they’re anything like Top Gun: Maverick, another Cruise movie from Paramount Pictures, the same studio behind Mission: Impossible, they won’t be streaming for a while. Maverick hit Paramount+ more than 200 days after its theatrical premiere.

Were it not for the COVID-19 pandemic, Dead Reckoning would have already been released, as Part One was originally slated for a July 2021 premiere. Delays due to the pandemic and subsequent COVID filming protocols (this is where Cruise’s viral, uh, virus rant originated) pushed the release back to 2022, then eventually to 2023.

Though it’s rare that any franchise ever truly ends, Dead Reckoning Part Two is expected to be the end of the franchise — at least as it currently exists.

Who’s Directing It?

Tom Cruise and director Christopher McQuarrie on the set of Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning Part One (2023)

(Photo by Christian Black/©Paramount Pictures)

Christopher McQuarrie, the director who took Mission: Impossible to new heights starting with Rogue Nation, the fifth film in the franchise, returns for both Part One and Part Two of Dead Reckoning. McQuarrie also co-wrote both installments with Erik Jendresen.

Who’s In It?

Ving Rhames and Simon Pegg in Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning Part One (2023)

(Photo by Christian Black/©Paramount Pictures)

Tom Cruise first played IMF agent extraordinaire Ethan Hunt in 1996 when the original Mission: Impossible hit theaters. He’ll have just turned 61 when Dead Reckoning Part One premieres, and Part Two will supposedly be his final appearance as the character, some 28 years later.

He’ll be joined by several returning cast members, including Simon Pegg and Ving Rhames as his fellow IMF agents Benji Dunn and Luther Stickell, respectively. Rebecca Ferguson returns as ex-MI6 agent Ilsa Faust, and Henry Czerny returns as former IMF director Eugene Kittridge, a character who hasn’t been seen since the original ‘96 franchise-starter. Vanessa Kirby returns as Alanna Mitsopolis, the black market arms dealer-turned-uneasy ally to Ethan Hunt, as does Frederick Schmidt, playing her brother Zola Mitsopolis.

Tom Cruise and Hayley Atwell in Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning Part One (2023)

(Photo by Christian Black/©Paramount Pictures)

There are lots of new additions to the franchise as well. Hayley Atwell, best known for playing Peggy Carter in the MCU, joins as Grace, a character McQuarrie described as a “destructive force of nature” with “somewhat ambiguous loyalties” on the franchise-focused Light the Fuse podcast. Ozark’s Esai Morales plays the film’s primary villain, Gabriel (Morales took over for Renfield star Nicholas Hoult, who dropped out due to scheduling issues), while Guardians of the Galaxy’s Pom Klementieff plays an assassin who works for Gabriel.

Esai Morales and Pom Klementieff in Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning Part One (2023)

(Photo by ©Paramount Pictures)

Shea Whigham, recently seen in HBO’s Perry Mason, plays Jasper Briggs, an enforcer in a mysterious group known as “The Community” who is attempting to track Ethan Hunt down along with his partner, played by Greg Tarzan Davis. Charles Parnell (Top Gun: Maverick), Rob Delaney (Deadpool 2), Indira Varma (Obi-Wan Kenobi), and Mark Gatiss (Sherlock) also star, as does The Princess Bride’s Cary Elwes in an as-yet undisclosed role.

Recent Oscar-winner Angela Bassett, who played CIA director Erika Sloane, was originally supposed to reprise her role but couldn’t due to COVID travel restrictions.

The cast for Part Two hasn’t fully been revealed, though it’s probably safe to assume that most of the major actors from Part One will appear once more, assuming they survive the first movie. We do know, however, that Ted Lasso star Hannah Waddingham will join the ensemble, as will Parks & Rec’s Nick Offerman, who plays Sydney, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

What Is Dead Reckoning About?

Tom Cruise in Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning Part One (2023)

(Photo by Christian Black/©Paramount Pictures)

Candidly speaking, the plots of the Mission: Impossible movies aren’t really their main appeal. They tend to be slick, serviceable MacGuffin chases that are an entertaining framework for banter and Tom Cruise’s insane stunts. But we do have some idea of what to expect from Dead Reckoning Part One. Here’s the official synopsis from Paramount:

“In Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One, Ethan Hunt and his IMF team embark on their most dangerous mission yet: To track down a terrifying new weapon that threatens all of humanity before it falls into the wrong hands. With control of the future and the fate of the world at stake, and dark forces from Ethan’s past closing in, a deadly race around the globe begins. Confronted by a mysterious, all-powerful enemy, Ethan is forced to consider that nothing can matter more than his mission — not even the lives of those he cares about most.”

Tracking down a weapon that threatens humanity before the bad guys get it? Dark forces from Ethan’s past? A deadly race around the globe, and a mysterious enemy? This is, in other words, pretty standard spy movie stuff, but few franchises are capable of pulling it off with as much style as Mission: Impossible. No specifics for the plot for Part Two have been revealed, so as not to spoil Part One, but it’s probably safe to say it won’t deviate too far from the tried and true formula, even as it serves to wrap up loose ends from Part One.

How Long Will It Be?

Tom Cruise in Mission: Impossible - Dead Reckoning Part One (2023)

(Photo by Christian Black/©Paramount Pictures)

Part One is on the longer side. Without credits, it boasts a runtime of 2 hours and 36 minutes. The length of Part Two, of course, is TBD.

How Many Trailers Are There?

While there have been no trailers for Part Two yet, naturally, there have been a few for Part One. The first, which was light on dialogue, came out in May of 2022, more than a year before the film’s release. The full trailer came out a year later.

While they’re not quite trailers, Paramount also released a trio of behind-the-scenes featurettes, one of which centers on Cruise’s most dangerous and ambitious stunt yet — driving a motorcycle off a cliff and parachuting to safety. It’s wild, and it certainly inspires a deeper appreciation for the work that went into the stunt, but if you don’t want to spoil the majesty of it all, it’s probably best to check it out after you’ve seen the film.

Is Tom Cruise Doing His Own Stunts?

Did you not see the featurette right there? The man drove a motorcycle off a cliff!

Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One opens in theaters on July 12, 2023.
Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part Two opens in theaters on June 28, 2024.

Thumbnail image by ©Paramount Pictures

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