Mission: Impossible – How They Did The Vault Heist

In this episode of Scene Breakdown, we take a look at Mission: Impossible’s famous vault heist sequence.

What do you think of when you think about iconic scenes in movie history? Maybe you think of the “I’ll be back” scene in The Terminator– or maybe it’s the iconic exchange between John McClain and Hans Gruber in Die Hard. But in either case, one cannot mention iconic action movies without paying respects to the vault heist scene in 1996’s Mission: Impossible.

Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) is a secret agent for the Impossible Missions Force- he’s up against his biggest threat yet and has nobody to trust except for his few loyal friends. In the scene, Ethan must break into a maximum security vault to steal a floppy disc that could save the day- but of course, it’s never that simple. This scene offers a visual and audible intensity that has yet to be matched in any of the proceeding films to date. Featuring no music, the scene relies heavily on Cruise’s acting chops and the impeccable sound design that paints a picture so intense that you can hear a pin drop. Or rather, a knife.

The scene was supposedly difficult to shoot with Cruise often leaning off-balance when he’s being suspended on a wire from the air conditioning duct. This resulted in Cruise famously putting pennies and loose change in his shoes to weigh his lower half down and keep his balance. The vault itself is iconic for its minimal and sleek design. According to the filmmakers, the vault was deliberately modeled to resemble the clean and futuristic look of the ship’s interior from 2001: A Space Odyssey and for our money- it looks damn good.

In our new episode of JoBlo’s Scene Breakdown, we’re going to watch the scene and- as always- share some incredible behind the scenes facts and commentary. With the latest Mission: Impossible instalment gearing up to hit theaters this summer, what better time is there to look back on the incredible breakout success of this first instalment.

Originally published at https://www.joblo.com/mission-impossible-vault-heist/