Tom Cruise has confirmed he will star in a fifth instalment of the Mission: Impossible franchise, Deadline reports.
The role with be Cruise’s fifth appearance as Ethan Hunt in the franchise, after his appearance in the fourth film Mission: Impossible- Ghost Protocol in 2011.
The film, which saw Cruise sky-walking across an exterior glass 124 floors high on a skyscraper in Dubai, was the most successful in the franchise grossing nearly $700 million worldwide.
Deadline reports that Cruise films Jack Reacher and The Man From U.N.C.L.E may also be turned into franchises, begging the question whether Hollywood creators will stop at turning any successful picture into a series of sequels.
“Mission Impossible 5” joins a host of on-going franchises including the current Iron Man 3, Man of Steel (a reboot of the Superman franchise), Transformers, Spiderman and Star Wars.
Three new Star Wars films have been announced by Disney after it acquired Lucasfilm in October, as well as an undisclosed number of spin-offs based on popular Star Wars characters. Star Wars: Episode VII is due for release in 2015.
The commercial strength of the Hollywood franchise has been demonstrated by the success of Iron Man 3, which beat prequel film The Avengers in the international box office on its opening weekend, grossing a total $351.2 million (£226.1) in worldwide sales so far.
But at what point will audiences tire of "Mission: Impossible – Gun Glory 8"? Commercially successful they might be, but franchises also show Hollywood’s alarming reluctance to think outside of the box.