Taxpayers’ £85m makes Tom Cruise’s missions possible

US film studio Paramount received almost £85 million in taxpayers’ money to make the three latest Mission: Impossible films in the UK

US film studio Paramount received nearly £85 million in taxpayers’ money to make its three latest Mission: Impossible films in the UK, accounts show.

Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One will be released tomorrow and is the seventh installment in the super spy series starring Tom Cruise, Hayley Atwell and Simon Pegg.

Parts of the film were shot in Abu Dhabi, Rome, Venice and Norway, among others. Most of it, however, was shot in the less glamorous surroundings of Leavesden Studios in Watford, Hertfordshire, and Longcross Studios near Chobham, Surrey.

The former was also home to the 2018 prequel, Mission: Impossible Fallout, while the latter is where next year’s Dead Reckoning Part Two will reportedly be filmed. Britain’s thriving TV and film industry benefits from companies spending money on additional services such as equipment hire, travel and visual effects.

Movie budgets are usually kept confidential, as studios combine the cost of individual movies into their total expenses and don’t specify how much they spent on each movie.

Refund: Tom Cruise’s latest Mission: Impossible film was largely shot in the UK

But films made in the UK are an exception. They benefit from the government’s Film Tax Relief scheme, which gives a cash refund of up to 25 per cent of money spent in the UK, provided it represents at least 10 per cent of the total cost. To demonstrate this to the government, studios set up separate companies to make each film and file public bills.

Mission: Impossible Fallout and both parts of Dead Reckoning were created by Jupiter Spring Productions, one of Paramount’s UK subsidiaries.

Accounts for Jupiter Spring show that it received £84.5 million in cash from the government during the five years since the company was founded in 2016.

The company has also received a total of £10.1 million in insurance payments and £1.4 million in grants as a result of disruptions caused by the pandemic, which has led to production shutdowns on several occasions. But the accounts also show that a total of £547.8 million has been spent on the making of the three Mission: Impossible films to date.

Costs peaked in 2021 as production on Dead Reckoning Part One was in full swing.

The film, which received mixed reviews from critics, has already made headlines.

In 2020, Cruise was famous in leaked audio yelling at crew members on set in Leavesden for breaking Covid safety protocols by standing too close together.

The Mission: Impossible franchise starring Cruise as agent Ethan Hunt has been running since 1996 and has grossed over $3.5 billion worldwide at the box office.

American actor Ving Rhames has appeared in every film in the series, and Pegg has had a recurring role since the third installment.