A Trio of Actors Testing to be Tom Cruise’s Partner in MI4

“Mission Impossible 4″ will be a hit even if Tom Cruise isn’t in it, but it’ll be a bigger hit if Cruise is in it. Let’s face it, the franchise is Cruise, and Cruise is the franchise.

So with Cruise on board (albeit with the now-famous pay cut), the studio needs to find some young blood to surround him. After all, old man Cruise can’t be running and jumping and saving the world all by his little lonesome in his advance years, can he? What is he now, 80? Or thereabouts.

Deadline has a trio of young actors currently testing this week for the privilege of playing Tom Cruise’s young help, including Keven Zegers, Christopher Egan, and “The Hurt Locker’s” Anthony Mackie.

Of the three, Zegers looks like a younger version of Tom Cruise (see pic below for a comparison; maybe they can write in Ethan Hunt’s little brother?), though I would prefer Mackie, if only to splash some color on the set. Then again, they already have Ving Rhames, who is scheduled to reprise is role as Ethan Hunt’s sidekick, and maybe that’s enough to meet the film’s minority quota. (Hollywood: they talk a good game, but usually it’s all white faces in the bunch.)

The plan for “Mission Impossible 4″, with Brad Bird directing, is to have Hunt once again saving the world, but this time with a cadre of younger MI:F agents lending a hand.