The Mummy isn’t doing so hot. Poor reviews and a lackluster box office have put the entire Dark Universe cinematic universe in jeopardy. That might not be a bad thing, though. I mean, do we really need an Invisible Man movie starring Johnny Depp? Think about it. There’s plenty of blame to go around–a weak script, an inexperienced director, the fact it’s a mummy movie–but it turns out Tom Cruise may be most to blame.
According to an exclusive report by Variety, Cruise had an excessive amount of creative control built into his contract (aka Cruise Control®). This included script approval, post-production input, and even some say over The Mummy‘s marketing and release. While Universal had some qualms about the project, they trusted Cruise’s vision anyway. Universal execs may not be making great decisions these days; for instance, they want to make this Dark Universe thing happen and think people want to see an Invisible Man movie with Johnny Depp in it.
To be fair, Cruise could be seen as trying to save a troubled picture by running a lot and acting like someone half his age. I mean, it worked for the Mission: Impossible franchise, right? What I’m saying is The Mummy was probably doomed regardless, and we just wound up with Tom Cruise-flavored doom.
Give the full report at Variety a read to learn more about Cruise’s creative decisions. Bonus: Read about an awkward pre-screening speech Cruise gave last week in New York. If anyone can find video of this, please post it in the comments.[via Variety]