Hayley Atwell was seen as Grace in the franchise with the American spy action film Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One and the writer-director Christopher McQuarrie just knew the leading lady to star opposite Tom Cruise is Ethan Hunt.
Grace is a burglar and Ethan’s new ally. Christopher McQuarrie said Atwell’s character is a “destructive force of nature”, while Atwell explained that her character’s loyalties and ambiguous. In an interview with Collider’s Steve Weintraub, Hayley Atwell talked about her character, Grace.
In an interview with Collider, was asked “What was it like you getting cast, and then Tom and Chris are like, “Yeah, you have a massive role. You’re involved in all the action. Get ready?”
Hayley Atwell said, “Yeah, it was a lot. For context, when I came in to do the screen test, McQ had seen me in a play 10 years previously, and he was like, “What you do on that stage, I want to bottle it and put it onto a screen and write a character for you, but I don’t know what that is yet.”
“We cut to 10 years later, and he calls me up and he says, “Will you come in and read with Tom? We’re thinking of creating the next installment of Mission: Impossible, looking for a new leading lady opposite him.” she added.
“There wasn’t a character that I had to fit into, there was just this brief of going, “We want to find the actress who loves this work ethic, who loves the process of it, who loves to collaborate and throw herself into every opportunity with all of these resources of working with these experts, as is possible. And from that, a character is going to emerge.” she revealed.
Hayley Atwell talked about the car chase in Rome in the film. “It’s so crazy. You’re absolutely right. You know, McQuarrie is an incredible writer. He really understands structure and pressure and how to put characters together in a situation that they shouldn’t be in or don’t want to be in, and that has inherent tension to it. ”
“And so the comedic elements to that are sort of comic relief in between those moments of how high the stakes are, but nothing that feels too, as you said, too pushed, too forced, too reached for. Every time we tried something that felt farcical or felt a little bit too cute, it didn’t work, and we could feel it, and we could change and pivot and do something else,” she added.