Update: Some plot description from Deadline: the movie is said to be “a Back to the Future style movie where Cruise would go back in time and meet his younger self.
Despite his extensive acting career over the past few decades, I don’t generally think of Tom Cruise as a “science fiction guy.” Sure, he’s done a couple — Vanilla Sky, Minority Report, Spielberg’s War of the Worlds — but it’s definitely not his primary genre. That may be changing now, though, because Cruise is looking to join yet another SF film, called Our Name Is Adam, on top of the two other upcoming SF projects he already has in the pipeline.
Unfortunately, we don’t know much at all about Our Name Is Adam at this point. Variety says it’s a spec (read, “original”) script by a fellow named T.S. Nowlin. He doesn’t have any produced credits at this point, although IMDb lists him as writing two other science fiction-y films in development. One is called Agent 13, has Charlize Theron rumored to be involved, and is listed as “action/sci-fi.” The second film, Ruin, is described as “based on Wes Ball’s animated short film about events that take place in a post-apocalyptic city overgrown with plants.” Either way, we tip our hats in approval to anybody who can actually get Hollywood to move forward with an original science fiction script.
Now, when or if Our Name Is Adam actually makes it to screen is still very much in the air. Cruise is keeping his schedule busy these days, with his action flick Jack Reacher scheduled to release this December, followed by a double-dose of science fiction. First up, it’s Oblivion, starring Cruise alongside Morgan Freeman and Olga Kurylenko. (Synopsis: “A court martial sends a veteran soldier to a distant planet, where he has to destroy the remains of an alien race. The arrival of an unexpected traveler causes him to question what he knows about the planet, his mission, and himself.”) That’s due in April 2013, followed by All You Need Is Kill, set for March 2014 and based on a Japanese novel by Hiroshi Sakurazaka. That one’s a sort of sci-fi Groundhog Day, with Cruise playing a soldier in a future war who finds himself reliving the same day over and over.
Much as it is easy to mock Cruise on occasion, I kind of have to love him simply by virtue of him getting interesting-sounding science fiction projects greenlighted in a town notoriously hesitant to throw money at anything that isn’t safe and easily digestible. Whether any of these three movies turn out to be classics of the genre remains to be seen, but I’m certainly more excited to see Cruise championing projects like this than I am the ill-advised Top Gun 2 that I’m trying my best not to think about.
And hey, as long as he doesn’t pull a Travolta and subject us to another Battlefield Earth movie, we’re good.