Director: Christopher McQuarrie
Stars: Tom Cruise, Rosamund Pike, Richard Jenkins, Werner Herzog, Robert Duvall, David Oyelowo, Alexia Fast, Michael Raymond-James, Jai Courtney
Release date: December 21

The enormous box office numbers pulled in by last year's Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol (see: $209 million domestic, $695 million worldwide) should reflect less upon Tom Cruise's name and more from the M:I brand as a whole, which, of course, is still Cruise's properly all the way through. But Ghost Protocol's success doesn't necessarily guarantee similar returns for Jack Reacher, the megastar's next (possible) action movie franchise, based on the popular book series by author Lee Childs.

Why not? For one, Jack Reacher isn't as known a brand name as Mission: Impossible, and the first pieces of footage from director Christopher McQuarrie's film show a leaner, grittier kind of adrenaline-packed thriller. Furthermore, let's not forget that before Ghost Protocol Cruise starred in the disappointing Knight and Day.

All that being said, Jack Reacher still has the potential to be especially badass, mainly due to madcap German filmmaker Werner Herzog's presence as a Russian bad guy called The Zec. That's the type of outside-the-box casting that you can't help but love. Clearly, McQuarrie, Cruise, and company aren't playing by the rules here.