Longcross used to be a U.K. Ministry of Defence site used to test army tanks, but has since been redeveloped as studios, housing blockbuster productions including “Skyfall,” “Thor: The Dark World” and “Guardians of the Galaxy.” Recent productions hosted at Longcross include “The King’s Man,” “Artemis Fowl,” “The Gentlemen” and “Death on the Nile.”
Variety has confirmed that Tom Cruise is back in the U.K. after a Christmas break Stateside, with production shifting from Warner Bros. Studios Leavesden to Longcross. The latter studio, which is in Surrey in Southeast England, falls within Tier 4 (the highest level of restrictions), although productions are allowed to continue under strict COVID-19 protocols. The film is expected to complete principal photography at Longcross.
The actor returns to the U.K. as it once again braves a devastating wave of coronavirus, with large swathes of the country moved up to Tier 4.
During the holiday period, coronavirus cases have soared. Monday saw a new daily record of 41,385 new COVID-19 cases. The last seven days alone — encompassing Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day — have seen 256,220 new cases, a surge of 25.7%. The period has also witnessed 3,493 deaths. More than 71,000 people have now succumbed to the virus in the U.K.
These numbers go some way in validating Cruise’s severity in enforcing virus protocols on set. During the film’s last schedule, at Warner Bros Studios, Leavesden, Cruise expressed his frustration at crew members perceived to be lax about observing distancing restrictions.
“I’m on the phone with every f—ing studio at night, insurance companies, producers and they’re looking at us and using us to make their movies. We are creating thousands of jobs, you motherf—ers,” Cruise boomed to offending crew members in a diatribe that was recorded and leaked to the media earlier this month. “I don’t ever want to see it again. Ever!”
“Mission: Impossible 7” was delayed in October when 12 people on set in Italy tested positive for COVID-19. Production resumed a week later and returned to the U.K. in December.
“Mission: Impossible 7” is directed by Christopher McQuarrie and is scheduled to release Nov. 19, 2021.
The Sun was first to report the move to Longcross.