Six Facts about Tom Cruise and "Jack Reacher"

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A homicide investigator digs deeper into a case involving a trained military sniper who shot five random victims. Based on a book in Lee Child's crime series, titled "One Shot".
Photo Credit: Paramount Pictures
October 30th, 2012

Six Facts about Tom Cruise and "Jack Reacher"

-- "Jack Reacher" is an adaptation of Lee Child's book "One Shot." This fact alone has garnered a lot of buzz for the upcoming film. Other facts around the film's production and casting and the book it was adapted from create a host of details that fans of Lee Child, the author of the Jack Reacher book series, will discuss for years to come. The movie is set for release on Dec. 21, 2012. Before you sit down for a viewing, here are a few facts about "Jack Reacher" you should know.

Fans Hate Tom Cruise's Casting as Reacher
The most prominent controversy concerning the film involves the casting of Tom Cruise as the title character Jack Reacher. Fans of the Lee Child novels starring Reacher are adamant that Cruise is a diminutive man compared to the powerhouse that Child describes Reacher to be. In fact, Child admits that Cruise is nearly 10 inches shorter than Reacher. However, Cruise's skill onscreen is the reason behind the casting. Child and "Jack Reacher" director Christopher McQuarrie believe that audiences will forget about Cruise's size once the movie's action starts. Until then, fans will continue to sound off about what they feel is a casting mistake.

The Author Loves the Controversy
Child actually embraces the controversy. He admits that the fans' fighting about Cruise on social media sites, blogs, and forums throughout the web shows that they are invested in the character. If fans are invested in the character, then Child feels that he did a great job building the character throughout the series. The fan reactions to the two official trailers of the "Jack Reacher" film are a testament to how their feelings will change once the movie begins to play, according to Child.

The Author is in the Film
Like Stephen King and Alfred Hitchcock, Child could not resist making a cameo in his first film. Look for Child in the scene where Reacher is leaving jail. He stands in front of a desk, talking to Rosamund Pike, who plays attorney Helen Rodin. As the two of them speak, an officer sits working behind the reception desk. That officer is Child. In a blink-and-you'll-miss-it cameo, audiences and fans of the Reacher book series will get to see their favorite author in the flesh-or a police uniform.

The Movie is not Book One in the Reacher Series
The book chosen to represent the first Reacher story adapted to film is "One Shot," which is not the first book in the Reacher series. That honor goes to "The Killing Floor," a popular novel that sold over 60 million copies around the world. The choice of "One Shot" over "The Killing Floor" as the first film took a lot of consideration and debate between the powers that be working on the film. Concerns included adaptability, creating a proper introduction for the character, and the ability to film the story. "One Shot" is actually the ninth book in the Reacher series.

Reacher has Origins in Grocery
Child admits to getting the name for his character from a trip to the grocery store. Child is a very tall man, the size of his character Reacher, in fact. While at the store, he was asked to "reach" up to a high shelf to retrieve an item for another shopper. That request led to a character name that is now known throughout the world. Such a modest beginning is a bit surprising for the tough, violent, and practical Reacher. However, Hollywood and the literary world are full of similar tales of inspiration.

Serial Movies
Cruise joined the Reacher film franchise, which means that "One Shot" will not be the first book from the Reacher book series to make it to the big screen. Although the name of the next book adaptation has yet to be released, the studio behind "Jack Reacher" is calling the film the first in the franchise. The number of movies expected in the franchise is also unknown. Like any other new film franchise, the fate of subsequent films depends on the success of the first one. Because Cruise is signed on for the franchise, fans will have to become comfortable with him in Reacher's shoes.

"Jack Reacher" is shaping up to be a surprise hit at the holiday box office. Child promises that audiences will forget that Cruise is filling a much taller man's shoes. If this is true, then the fans of the Reacher book series will easily give the "Jack Reacher" film franchise an impressive start.