Advertisement

Jack Reacher author Lee Child explains why book readers didn’t like Tom Cruise as character

Lee Child has explained why fans of his Jack Reacher books didn’t approve of Tom Cruise’s casting in the film franchise.

Cruise played the former Military Police officer in two films in 2012 and 2016, but a contingent of book fans didn’t think he was right for the role.

This was due to Cruise’s height – in the books, Reacher is described as being “extremely tall” (he’s 6ft, 5in), and “extremely broad, long-armed and long-legged”. In real life, Cruise is 5ft, 7in.

Speaking to Metro.co.uk about the backlash to Cruise, author Child said: “There was criticism from the book fans, because they had built up a very clear image of what Reacher should look like.”

However, he said that it was “interesting” that those who hadn’t read his books “really liked those movies” as “they were kind of convinced by Cruise”.

Playing devil’s advocate to Cruise’s critics, Child said: “I think that the size thing is important to certain parts of the narrative.

“Reacher has got to scare people and you can do that so much easier with one glance of this huge animal rather than a normal-sized actor.”

Tom Cruise’s casting in ‘Jack Reacher’ was met with derision from book readers (Paramount Pictures)
Tom Cruise’s casting in ‘Jack Reacher’ was met with derision from book readers (Paramount Pictures)

A Jack Reacher TV show, which has just been released on Amazon Prime Video, sees Smallville actor Alan Ritchson playing the role. Ritchson is 6ft, 1in.