Tom Cruise Returning 'Mission: Impossible 5' But Sequel Still Needs Director

This one was actually pretty easy. As first reported by Deadline.com and later confirmed by EW.com, Tom Cruise will play Ethan Hunt for a fifth time in an upcoming sequel to "Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol." The film does not have an official title or release date just set, but J.J. Abrams' Bad Robot will produce alongside Cruise and Paramount Pictures.

That Cruise will star in "Mission: Impossible 5" is of little surprise to anyone. "Ghost Protocol," the last film in the franchise, was Cruise's biggest global hit ever, earning $694 million in ticket sales. As recently as last month, Cruise told British talk show host Graham Norton that he was working on a story for "Mission: Impossible 5." He also discussed the fifth film in an interview with Total Film back in October of 2012. It seems all that was left to make this reunion official was a Deadline.com news blast.

As for who will direct "Mission: Impossible 5," that remains up in the air. Christopher McQuarrie, who wrote and directed "Jack Reacher" for Paramount and Cruise, has been discussed as a possibility for the job. In February of this year, McQuarrie wrote on Twitter that he was in the midst of "deciding to accept" the "Mission: Impossible 5" directing gig. Nothing came from that missive, however, and McQuarrie's tweet has since been deleted.

For more on Cruise's "Mission: Impossible 5" deal and what else he's got on the burner at the moment, hit Deadline.com.

Celebrity News & Photos