Movie Stars: Cruise, Tom–Reaffirming Box-Office Bankability with Mission Impossible Series

Reaffirming his global stardon, Tom Cruise registered strongly with Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation, which grossed $4 million on Thursday night.

The preview showings began at 8 p.m. at 2,764 locations. The gross is comparable to “Mad Max,” which earned $3.7 million in evening shows, “World War’s” $3.6 million, and “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes’” $4.1 million.

Paramount’s fifth “Mission: Impossible” expands to 3,956 locations on Friday. The studio’s extensive marketing campaign has centered on the 53-year-old Cruise clinging to the side of an Airbus A400 plane during takeoff.

The action adventure, which carries a $150 million budget, should open around $40 million over the weekend, and some analysts think it could rise to $50 million, given the strong critical support for the film.

“Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation” is set in Morocco, Austria and the U.K. as Cruise’s Ethan Hunt tracks a organization hellbent on mucking about with the global economy and assassinating world leaders. The film should play well overseas and will bow in 40 international countries this weekend, including Mexico, Australia and Korea.

Jeremy Renner, Simon Pegg and Rebecca Ferguson also star. Christopher McQuarrie directs from his own script. David Ellison’s Skydance produced with Paramount.

The producers are Cruise, J.J. Abrams and Bryan Burk; Executive producers are Ellison, Dana Goldberg, Don Granger and Jake Myers.

Cruise at the Box-Office

Cruise’s three most recent films — “Edge of Tomorrow,” “Oblivion” and “Jack Reacher” — generated solid, rather than spectacular, box office earnings.

The sci-fier “Edge of Tomorrow” reached $100 million in the U.S. and brought in another $269 million internationally.  Tital box-office: $369 million.

Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol, in 2011, took in $209 million in the U.S. and $485 million internationally, to a total of $694 million.