Why ‘Too Short’ Tom Cruise Was Actually Great As Jack Reacher

The Hollywood actor is dropped from the film franchise as the character heads to the small screen.

Tom Cruise might be ‘too short’ to portray Jack Reacher in an upcoming TV series but the character’s creator Lee Child once told Forces Radio BFBS that the actor captured the ‘inside’ of the action hero.

Child, the author who describes the hero of his books as 6ft 5in tall, has brought the character into the public spotlight once again after revealing how a reboot of Jack Reacher for TV would feature a new actor instead of Cruise who lacks the ‘physical’ characteristics of the novels’ prodigious namesake.

The revelation has sparked an outpouring of debate over the last week since Child talked about the new role on national radio.

Entertainment and news sites might have been quick to seize on the revelation that Cruise is to be replaced in the upcoming TV version but Child had admitted that the actor was a ‘mismatch’ for the part some time ago but was also full of praise for Cruise’s acting talents – as heard in this interview with Forces Radio BFBS a year ago.

At the time, he told Chris Kaye that Cruise does not look how you would imagine Jack Reacher in Child’s books.

The size of Reacher is a big component of the stories and there has been some complaint that Cruise did not have the physicality for the part. 

However, in the Forces Radio BFBS interview, Child does concede that Cruise did get the mindset right. He said:

“I think his movies are really great and in terms of the inside of Reacher, Tom Cruise does a great job."

He added that Cruise "is not 6ft 5ins tall and he doesn't weigh 20 stone.”

In the interview, he admits:

"There is a mismatch there."

Reacher has appeared in 22 novels by the crime writer and two feature-length films. The protagonist of the series is a former major with the military police who roams the US investigating suspicious situations.

Child also told back then how there were no big actors around who could carry such a part.

He added that filmmakers have to go with who wants to take on the part, adding that Cruise “wanted to do it” and that he “did a great job.”

The new TV series is currently in development, the latest instalment in the Jack Reacher franchise.

Box offices around the world took in about £167 million when the first Jack Reacher film debuted in 2012, and while Cruise elicited mostly positive reviews, fans will now be eager to discover how a new actor will fare.

Picture: Gage Skidmore

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