Is Tom Cruise coming to quarry near Leighton Buzzard to film Mission: Impossible 7?
Heath and Reach residents are wondering if Hollywood superstar Tom Cruise could soon be making an appearance near the village as a mystery production company has given notice of its arrival.
In a letter to Heath and Reach Parish Council it was announced that a film crew would be arriving at L. B. Silica Sand Ltd quarry, Bryants Lane, this spring to work on a project entitled: 'Libra'.
Cinema buffs will know that the working title for Mission: Impossible 7 has been claimed to be 'Libra' by several entertainment news outlets, meaning tongues are wagging in LBO land and Mr Cruise's fans are feeling excited!
Heath and Reach Parish Council posted the letter that it received from the film company - the name of which has not been disclosed - onto Facebook.
The parish council's post reads: "Lights, Camera, Action.
"Below is an extract of a letter issued by the film company working on a new film coming soon.
"Dear Resident /Business Owner
"I am writing to introduce myself and inform you of the filming that is taking place in your local area in April for a new feature film titled ‘LIBRA’. All filming activity will take place within The Lb Silica Sands Quarry. Our complete filming activity will take place over 5 nights from Monday 26th April – Saturday 1st May. Our schedule is outlined as follows:
Preparation: Monday 22nd March – Saturday 24th April:
Days 0800hrs – 1800hrs
Filming: Monday 26th April – Sat 1st May:
Night Shoots Hours TBC, 1700 – 0500
Strike: Monday 3rd May – Sat 15th May.
Days 0800hrs – 1800hrs
"We are liaising with the Heath & Reach Parish Council regards our proposed intentions and schedule. For the filming we will need to use various lighting positions within the quarry and nearby roads; all lighting cranes will be in pre-agreed positions with the council and the quarry. If you have any concerns regarding light spillage, we can offer temporary black out material for your windows to help block out the light. Similarly, there will be special effects during the filming, such as pyrotechnics and wind machines. Noise levels will be tested prior to the filming and we will endeavour to minimise any disruption.
"More detailed plans will be forthcoming, but given that we intend to film overnight, we are keen to meet as many local residents and businesses and talk through any queries or be made aware of anything we have not anticipated. We very much hope our consultation will make the process positive for residents. Similarly, if you are interested in film production and would like to get involved with the project then please do let me know.
"I will personally be present when the crew is on site. If you have any queries or concerns either in advance, during the preparation period or during filming, please contact me via my mobile or email below.
"A subsequent letter will be sent out closer to the filming confirming all details and arrangements.
"Location filming cannot work without the ongoing support of local residents and businesses and for this we are very grateful.
"Thank you for your time and if you have any questions or require any further information please do not hesitate to contact me.
"We look forward to bringing this exciting project to your local area.
"Yours Sincerely, Jack Leary, Assistant Location Manager – ‘Libra’. "
The LBO contacted Mr Leary, but he was not able to disclose any further information.
The quarry on Bryants Lane has previously featured in TV programmes, such as Birds of a Feather’s Christmas special and The Keith And Paddy Picture Show, as well as Hollywood blockbusters.
Chairman of the Parish Council , Cllr Richard Thyer, said: "The LB Silica Sands quarry has been used as a set for filming before - it was the backdrop for one of the Mummy films, has doubled as Afghanistan for war dramas, played a bit part in the Crown and only recently was transformed into an ancient Roman village. It’s attractive to location managers because it is so versatile; you can transform it into pretty well any era or backdrop you like.
“Filming takes place over a week and there is clearly going to be a substantial presence on the Bryants Lane site. The film company have been proactive in writing to local people with assurances about minimising noise and disturbance, particularly with night scenes, after we raised those issues.
“I think it is a great feather in the cap for Heath and Reach to be a sought-after location by Hollywood; remember it is also bringing in revenue that the Parish Council can use to benefit the village. As to celebrities in the village, who can say - just keep your eyes open for a famous face or two!”
Commenting on the Heath and Reach Parish Council Facebook post, one resident joked that if Tom Cruise visits LBO Land then he might be in for a bumpy ride: "Can’t imagine he will be too chuffed having to take his expensive vehicle through those pot holes. Someone will get fired."
Last year, the Radio Times announced that Mission: Impossible 7 and 8 were filming back-to-back, and were originally set to release in the UK on July 23, 2021 and August 5, 2022 respectively.
However, it stated that due to coronavirus, the seventh film’s release date had been pushed back to November 2021
At the LBO, we're always interested to know if local areas are being used for filming. If you have a story, email: [email protected]