Brian De Palma’s Mission: Impossible (1996) is one of Hollywood’s best films to have its 20th anniversary this year.
Mission: Impossible was based on the 1966 TV series surrounding a clandestine intelligence agency called Impossible Mission Force (IMF).
The film starred Tom Cruise as protagonist Ethan Hunt, along with Jon Voight, Jean Reno and Ving Rhames.
Here is a list of four things Mission: Impossible taught Hollywood.
As an Action Movie
This movie was the initiation of Tom Cruise doing many of his own dangerous stunts. De Palma convinced Cruise into getting involved with the exploding fish tank sequence himself.
This is because the shots would not have worked or become believable with a stunt double.
The train sequence in the climax, took 6 weeks to film at the 007 stage at Pinewood Studios.
Mission: Impossible is the only film in the franchise, which did not have a shootout or gunfight sequence. This is probably a never-happening event in Hollywood action flicks, says Movie Fone.
As a Detailed Action Movie
The most difficult task of lighting Prague at night presented cinematographer Stephen H. Burum and his crew with a tough set of logistics.
In order to get the best representation of an atmosphere of old Europe, two miles of riverfront on either side of Prague’s historic Charles Bridge were back lit.
The preparation alone consumed some two weeks.
A Director’s Action Film
Action films tend to evoke audience’s appreciation for the action hero and the stunts. Mission: Impossible changed that idea.
De Palma played the role of the efficient leader and director of the crew. He convinced Tom Cruise to set the first act of the film in Prague, a city rarely seen in Hollywood films at the time.
During the aquarium explosion sequence, De Palma asked Cruise to do it instead of the stunt double. According to Phactual, there was a possibility that the actor could have drowned.
De Palma often borrows sequences from the masters or other movies to create important scenes in his films. The dangling wire scene was borrowed from a heist film entitled “Tokapki.”
As an Intelligent Action Movie
Oscar-nominated writing team Willard Huyck and Gloria Katz started writing a script. It would go through the hands of writers David Koepp and Steven Zaillian, before being finally refined by Koepp and Robert Towne.
Towne kept refining the script all the way through production.
The film was taken into pre-production without a script that the filmmakers wanted to use. De Palma created the action sequences.
However, Koepp and Towne weren’t satisfied with the story that would make these sequences take place, says IMDB.
Ultimately Towne ended up helping organize a beginning, middle and end. De Palma and Koepp worked on the plot.