Tom Cruise wanted to star in one of the biggest box office bombs of all time

By Doug Norrie | 14 seconds ago

Tom Cruise is known as a blockbuster machine. One of the most prolific Hollywood careers of all time, he continues to produce high-priced, high-value films even as he nears his sixth decade on this earth. But sometimes the biggest career wins are the films and roles that *don’t* end up happening. And that was definitely the case for Cruise when it came to one of the biggest box-office bombs of all time. The Wrap says there was a time when Tom Cruise was dying to play John Carter for Disney, even openly promoting the role. It didn’t materialize, and that way Cruise could have potentially saved himself from potential embarrassment.

The Wrap has dealt extensively with the making of John Carter, A film that has been in various stages of development for years at both Disney and, intermittently, Paramount. In the early 1990s, the film was beginning to enter a development timeline and Tom Cruise had expressed interest in a starring role. But things started to fall apart when it became apparent that the visual effects wouldn’t pass the pattern. After that, it was shelved for nearly two decades, though Paramount has tried to get things moving in the meantime.

Then, in 2008, Andrew Stanton came on board to take the helm John Carter and Disney returned the rights to the film. According to The Wrap, Stanton only wanted Taylor Kitsch in the role, although Tom Cruise began actively promoting the role. Cruise never really tested for the role when it was all said and done, but the film’s creators agreed that they definitely wanted to step into the lead role for the film. It didn’t work out in the end, Kitsch landed the title part and the rest is crazy film history.

Tom Cruise doesn’t grab the lead John Carter probably a blessing in disguise. It’s a bit of a chicken-and-egg scenario because a flick starring Cruise is likely to fare differently, so we can’t go 1-1 on the results here. But there’s no doubt that the film ended up being a cautionary tale, spending a ton of money on a big-budget film and expecting blockbuster results. Released in 2012 with an estimated budget somewhere in the $350 million range. John Carter literally fought. It was one of the most expensive films ever made, yet it only raked in $284 million at the box office. This is a disaster of the highest order for s studio, especially given that it was likely seen as a tentpole production. The critics weren’t either, with the film scoring 52% on Rotten Tomatoes.

As for Tom Cruise, they were just finished at that time Mission: Impossible III and would keep playing Valkyrie and Knight & Day so he didn’t exactly smash it in the decision-making process. But then, in 2010, they came out Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol who worked to revitalize this franchise. Next up for the actor are a few episodes of the Impossible Mission Franchise and release for Top Gun: Maverick.

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