Jeremy Renner’s Mission: Impossible 7 Absence Explained

Christopher McQuarrie was sympathetic to Jeremy Renner’s plight, saying the actor’s absence in “Fallout” was necessary to ensure he and Tom Cruise had “absolute freedom” to figure out what the film should be. “The unfortunate thing for Jeremy is that he got caught in this perfect storm of, one can’t use you and one doesn’t know how to, given the massive complications they had with ‘Avengers,'” McQuarrie added.

At one point, McQuarrie even had an idea for how to write Brandt out of the franchise. “I had this whole idea that [‘Fallout’] would start with the death of a team member,” he said. He realized it couldn’t be Ethan’s longtime co-workers Luther (Ving Rhames) or Benji (Simon Pegg). “[…] No matter how many movies into it, it’s always going to be the same thing. You killed the Black guy. And we didn’t think the movie could recover if you killed Benji,” explained McQuarrie. He wasn’t wrong on either count.

Instead, he pitched the idea of killing off Brandt to Renner. As McQuarrie recalled:

“So I said to Renner, ‘Hey listen, I have this idea for an opening sequence where you sacrifice yourself to save the team, and that the mission-gone-wrong not only involves losing the plutonium but involves the death of a team member.’ And Jeremy was like, ‘Thanks, but no thanks’. […] He was smart not to take the short paycheck for three days of work and getting blown up.”

That also left the door open for Brandt to return in the upcoming “Mission: Impossible — Dead Reckoning Part Two” following his absence in “Part One.” It might be a long shot, but then again, it wouldn’t be the first time a “Mission: Impossible” character reappeared after vanishing years earlier.

Perhaps Renner will get to kick that football after all.

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