A nausea-inducing behind-the-scenes featurette shows how Tom Cruise, Annabelle Wallis and the crew defied gravity to bring a key scene from The Mummy to life. No Book of the Dead required.
When the first trailer for Universal’s The Mummy reboot came out, one of the most impressive moments was the scene where Cruise, Wallis, and a bunch of soldiers were being tossed around a crashing plane like a bunch of ragdolls.
Turns out, Cruise came up with the idea to perform the stunt a while ago… either because it was part of the script and he didn’t want to use a green screen, or he simply said, “Fuck it, let’s crash a plane in this movie because I wanna float in space.” Based on the director’s commentary, I’m leaning toward the latter.
“Tom said, ‘Yeah we’re gonna do it for real, we’re gonna get on a real plane and we’re gonna crash,’ and I thought, ‘This is just never gonna happen,'” director Alex Kurtzman said.
The crew converted a Zero-G plane from NoveSpace, a subsidiary of the French Space Agency, fitting it with specially designed padding to make it look like the inside of a aeroplane. They went on a series of parabolic flights, which take you thousands of feet in the air so you can float inside the aircraft. Each weightless session lasts about 20 seconds, which isn’t a long time to film.
It’s amazing to see the actors, stunt doubles, and crew members floating around as they struggled to grab every shot they could. The result, though, is impressive… to say the last.