As recently reported, Tom Cruise is indeed going to win his unofficial space race with the Fast and Furious franchise to film a movie in the great beyond (or, at least, the very edge of the great beyond). The initial news revealed that Cruise would be teaming up with SpaceX CEO (and giver of strange baby names) Elon Musk to make the first narrative feature that actually films in outer space. And it won’t be part of the Mission: Impossible franchise (or any other current Cruise-associated projects), so mystery swirled on what studio would be picking up the dime, where this project would film, the level of Musk’s involvement, and so on.
At least one of those questions has been answered. NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine confirmed on Twitter that the U.S. governmental agency would be participating in this movie. Cruise will film on the International Space Station, and Bridenstine expressed NASA’s hopes that the movie will “inspire a new generation of engineers and scientists” to boost the agency’s future plans.
NASA is excited to work with @TomCruise on a film aboard the @Space_Station! We need popular media to inspire a new generation of engineers and scientists to make @NASA’s ambitious plans a reality. pic.twitter.com/CaPwfXtfUv
— Jim Bridenstine (@JimBridenstine) May 5, 2020
Very clearly, Bridenstine shouted out Cruise in this tweet. He did not tag Musk or SpaceX, but Musk weighed in with a reply: “Should be a lot of fun!”
Should be a lot of fun!
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 5, 2020
I’m certainly reading far too much into the omission of Musk from the tweet, other than Bridenstine maybe sidestepping an association with Musk’s recent (and very political) stances about the pandemic. After all, NASA’s gearing up to host May 1 briefings for the SpaceX Demo-2 mission, which places NASA astronauts aboard SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft. It should be a historic mission, and the Top Gun: Maverick star’s upcoming, space-set movie will do likewise. Sorry, Dominic Toretto, you’ve been Cruise’d.