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Par ‘Mission’: Think global

Studio preems early start on Cruise tentpole pic

Mission: Go global.

Paramount will host the world premiere of “Mission: Impossible III” April 24 in Rome, a week and a half before the Tom Cruise starrer makes its U.S. debut at the Tribeca Film Festival on May 3.

That’s not including a few stops along the way. The film will preem April 25 in London, April 26 in Paris and May 1 in Mexico City.

Par execs say Cruise is a worldwide star, and that he wanted to divide up his efforts. In rapid-fire order, he’s set to attend each of the preems and take part in elaborate promo efforts.

Part of the film, directed by J.J. Abrams, takes place in Rome.

The decision to preem outside of the U.S. reflects the might of the international box office — the first two pics in the “Mission: Impossible” franchise grossed more overseas than domestically — as well as the flexibility that goes along with marketing a well-known brand and having a day-and-date release.

In the case of a film that’s not a known quantity, overseas markets can be swayed by the heat of a U.S. bow. That’s not true with a well-known sequel like this, however.

Full-blown regional premieres like the ones Par is planning for London, Paris and Mexico City are designed to boost interest in a particular territory and to spawn plenty of local headlines. For instance, Jonathan Rhys-Meyers, Cruise’s British co-star, will attend the London preem but not the others.

The preem sked laid out by Par also ensures the cast of “Mission” — including Ving Rhames, Keri Russell, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Laurence Fishburne — will have plenty of time to get to Gotham for the Tribeca gala.

Cruise’s sked could be disrupted by the birth of his baby with Katie Holmes. In that instance, all roads won’t lead to Rome.

Film opens domestically May 5.

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