Amazon Prime Video premiered its new series ‘Reacher’ in which, in just eight episodes, it is possible to restart the history of a franchise that once had Tom Cruise, famous for his stunts, in the starring role.
It was in 2012 that the New York actor gave life to Jack Reacher for the first time, to return three years later in the film ‘Jack Reacher: Never Go Back’.
The first tapes of ‘Jack Reacher’ had mixed opinions, since although some consider them good options for action movies, for fans of ‘One Shot’, the novel on which their story is inspired, it was not a good adaptation .
Despite the reboot of the franchise, Tom Cruise was not considered for the role, for a reason that had little to do with his talent.
Wasn’t Tom Cruise the best choice for ‘Reacher’?
Lee Child, the author of the novel on which the adventures of Jack Reacher are based, commented on why he believes that Tom Cruise was not as successful with his character.
In a 2018 interview with Mike Sweeney for BBC Radio Manchester, the novelist explained that in his books, Reacher is a 6-foot-5 man, with “hands as big as saucers.”
“Cruise, for all his talent, he didn’t have that physique,” Child told Mike Sweeney.
The author claimed that shortly after the movies were released, readers complained to him about how unsuitable Tom Cruise was for the role.
“I really enjoyed working with Cruise. He’s a very, very nice guy. We had a lot of fun, but ultimately the readers are right. Reacher’s size is very, very important and is a huge component of who he is.”
“The idea is that when Reacher walks into a room, everyone is a little nervous for just the first minute. So what I’ve decided to do is: there will be no more movies with Tom Cruise.”
Child concluded that part of the interview with a request that all fans who were upset about Tom Cruise’s involvement help the new production team find the perfect man for the role. That mission was apparently a complete success, since they found the ideal actor for the character.
Who is the actor who replaced Tom Cruise in ‘Reacher’?
Despite the fact that the two films together grossed close to $370 million, Tom Cruise is no longer a part of the ‘Reacher’ franchise. Instead, the actor Alan Ritchson is the one who gives life to the new version of Jack Reacher.
Alan Ritchson has a long history in action films and series, having appeared as Aquaman in ‘Smallville’ and as Hawk in ‘Titans’. In addition, he has several police series on his resume, such as ‘Hawaii Five-0’, ‘CSI: Miami’ and ‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine’.
Physically, he has remarkable muscles, which together with his height of 6 feet 2 inches, make him very close to the appearance of the character created by Lee Child.
Although they may be inevitable, Ritchson himself assured in an interview for ‘Metro Philadelphia’ that his work cannot be compared to that of Tom Cruise.
“There is no way to compare myself to Tom Cruise. He is a legend and I am not. I want to look at the books and the work of Lee Child and respect that and bring in the best Jack Reacher I can.”
The 39-year-old actor commented that he is honored to be put in the same conversation as Tom Cruise, but his intention was to put his own stamp on the character and that he is grateful for the opportunity to develop a story in a series of several chapters and not in a tape of two hours.
For Ritchson, the physique of the character was very important, so he had to put on 30 pounds of muscle to match the look of his character in the books.
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Tom Cruise was replaced for being ‘shorty’: they didn’t call him to be in ‘Reacher’
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