Mission: Impossible III

2006 film by J. J. Abrams

Mission: Impossible III is a 2006 American action spy movie directed by first-time director J. J. Abrams and is the third movie in the Mission: Impossible series. It stars Tom Cruise, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Ving Rhames, Billy Crudup, Michelle Monaghan, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Keri Russell, Maggie Q, Simon Pegg, Eddie Marsan and Laurence Fishburne. The movie was distributed by Paramount Pictures.

Mission: Impossible III
Directed byJ. J. Abrams
Written by
Based onMission: Impossible
by Bruce Geller
Produced by
CinematographyDan Mindel
Edited by
Music byMichael Giacchino
Distributed byParamount Pictures
Release date
  • May 5, 2006 (2006-05-05)
Running time
126 minutes[1]
CountryUnited States
Budget$150–186 million[2][3]
Box office$398.5 million[4]

The movie had several changes in directors. The development for a third Mission: Impossible movie started in 2002, with David Fincher being the intended director. He left due to creative differences. His replacement, Joe Carnahan, also left the movie production in July 2004 due to the same reason. Abrams was hired months later after he was approached by Cruise, who wanted him to direct the movie as he was a fan of Abrams' Alias (2001–2006). However, this caused the movie to be further delayed due to Abrams' contract obligations for Alias and Lost (2006–2010), which resulted in potential cast additions such as Kenneth Branagh, Carrie-Anne Moss and Scarlett Johansson to leave. Principal photography began in July 2005 and ended in October. Filming locations include Shanghai, Berlin, Rome, Los Angeles, and the Vatican City.

Mission: Impossible III premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival on April 26, 2006, and was released in the United States on May 5. The sequel, Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, was released in 2011.





In 2002, director David Fincher was supposed to direct the next movie of the Mission: Impossible series. It was intended to be released in the summer of 2004. Fincher eventually dropped out because he wanted to focus on Lord of Dogtown (2005).[3] He later said that it was due to creative differences in the direction of the movie.[5] Joe Carnahan was chosen to replace Fincher, and worked on developing the movie for fifteen months.[6] Under Carnahan's direction, the movie would have featured "Kenneth Branagh playing a guy who's based on Timothy McVeigh," as well as Carrie-Anne Moss and Scarlett Johansson in other roles.[7]

Carnahan quit in July 2004 due to a dispute over the movie's tone.[3] J. J. Abrams was then offered the director's role by Tom Cruise after he had binge-watched the first two seasons of Alias.[8][3] Abrams eventually signed on and production was delayed due to his contract obligations with Alias and Lost. Due to the delay, Branagh, Moss, and Johansson departed from the project.[6] Ricky Gervais was cast as Benjamin Dunn, but also left the project due to scheduling conflicts with For Your Consideration (2006) as a result of production delays.[9] On June 8, 2005, the movie was given the green light by Paramount Pictures after a new cast of actors was hired and the movie's budget was redeveloped, and Cruise took a major pay cut.[6]



On Rotten Tomatoes, 71% of 225 ratings are positive. The average rating is 6.60/10.[10] On Metacritic, the movie has a score of 66 out of 100 based on 42 critic reviews, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[11]


  1. "MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE III (12A)". British Board of Film Classification. April 18, 2006. Archived from the original on February 17, 2020. Retrieved July 18, 2023.
  2. Snyder, Gabriel (March 12, 2006). "Summer survey". Variety. Archived from the original on September 23, 2021. Retrieved July 18, 2023.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Chitwood, Adam (May 5, 2021). "The Wild Development History of 'Mission: Impossible III'". Collider. Archived from the original on January 24, 2022. Retrieved July 18, 2023.
  4. "Mission: Impossible III (2006)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved July 18, 2023.
  5. Horowitz, Josh (January 4, 2008). "David Fincher Discusses Reunion With Brad Pitt, Possible 'Fight Club' Musical". MTV. Archived from the original on July 19, 2023. Retrieved July 19, 2023.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Susman, Gary (June 8, 2005). "War of the Wallets". Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on August 19, 2014. Retrieved February 5, 2013.
  7. "Joe Carnahan: "My 'Mission: Impossible' Was Better"". Hollywood.com. April 4, 2007. Archived from the original on June 4, 2009. Retrieved July 19, 2023.
  8. The Making of the Mission (DVD). Paramount Home Entertainment. 2006.
  9. Evans, Bradford (January 19, 2012). "The Lost Roles of Ricky Gervais". Vulture. Retrieved July 19, 2023.
  10. "Mission: Impossible III". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved July 18, 2023.
  11. "Mission: Impossible III". Metacritic. Retrieved February 20, 2023.

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