Tom Cruise is Jack Reacher – It’s not how big you are but how big you feel (in your heels)

by |August 17, 2011

SMH: Diminutive actor Tom Cruise has sparked an online backlash over his casting as hulking ex-soldier Jack Reacher in the adaptation of Lee Child’s hugely successful book series, with critics branding him too small to play the popular fictional character.

The diminutive star of action blockbusters such as Top Gun, Minority Report and the Mission: Impossible franchise has confirmed that he has signed on to play oversized action hero Reacher in the movie One Shot. The first film adaptation of the best-selling series… read more…

UPDATE: Check out Duncan Munro, the winner of Random House Australia’s Jack Reacher look-alike competition.

Me: Funny thing is, I was going to put myself forward for the role of Jack Reacher but I didn’t because I thought they would think me too tall for the role. Gee, how annoyed with myself was I when I heard that little Tommy Cruise had been awarded the role! I’d be a great Jack Reacher, too.  Compare me with the stats below.

Jack Reacher stats:
Name: Jack Reacher (no middle name)
Born: October 29th
Measurements: 6’5″, 220-250 lbs. (100 – 115kg), 50″ chest
(Tom:  Approx 5 feet and 7 inches tall and weighs 77 kilograms.)
Hair: Dirty-blond
Eyes: Ice blue
Clothing: 3XLT coat, 95 cm. pants’ inseam

Okay, so I have brown hair and brown eyes… They can be changed… I don’t know how big a 50″ chest is, but with my man boobs, I’m sure I’m getting close to the mark…

Okay, so if I’m not right for the job and Tom isn’t right what are we doing wrong?

What does Jack Reacher really look like?

From an interview with LEE CHILD –

Killing Floor, set in the United States, earned rave reviews, and introduced the character who would secure Child’s place in the pantheon of great mystery writers: a 6 foot, 5 inch tall, 250 pound ex-U.S. Army military cop named Jack Reacher.

He’s described in the book as “a rock.”

“Yeah, he’s a big guy,” Child said. “No vulnerability. He is who he is. He’s confident, practiced, professional. He’s got the physical strength, he’s a force. In other words, he’s the hammer. He’s not likely to be the nail.”

In TRIPWIRE, Jodie  Garber noted “His lazy lopsided grin. His tousled hair. His arms, so long they gave him a greyhound’s grace even though he was built like the side of a house. His eyes, cold icy blue like the Arctic. His hands, giant battered mitts that bunched into fists the size of footballs.”

This gem is from the TRIPWIRE blurb:   Digging swimming pools by hand in Key West, Florida, Jack Reacher is as tanned and as fit as he’s ever been. A local girl says he looks like a condom filled with walnuts.

Tom may not be tall but if the pic above from his new film Rock of Ages is any indicator he is well on his way to becoming a condom filled with walnuts. So that should keep some of the grumblers happy.

Thankfully LEE CHILD has come up with the best solution to this sticky problem – distract his ardent followers with the release of a new book. Coming in October, the sixteenth instalment of the Jack Reacher series…



March 1997. A woman has her throat cut behind a bar in Carter Crossing, Mississippi. Just down the road is a big army base. Is the murderer a local guy – or is he a soldier?

Jack Reacher, still a major in the military police, is sent in undercover.The county sheriff is a former U.S. Marine – and a stunningly beautiful woman. Her investigation is going nowhere. Is the Pentagon stonewalling her? Or doesn’t she really want to find the killer?

The adrenaline-pumping, high-voltage action in The Affair is set just six months before the opening of Killing Floor, and it marks a turning point in Reacher’s career. If he does what the army wants, will he be able to live with himself? And if he doesn’t, will the army be able to live with him? Is this his last case in uniform?


I don’t know what all the fuss is about, really. Is Tom too short to play Jack Reacher? From where I stand, they both look short.

Here is the trailer to Tom next film – Mission: Impossible IV – height may not be his thing but exciting, action filled flicks certainly are…

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About the Contributor

While still in his twenties, John Purcell opened a second-hand bookshop in Mosman, Sydney, in which he sat for ten years reading, ranting and writing. Since then he has written, under a pseudonym, a series of very successful novels, interviewed hundreds of writers about their work, appeared at writers’ festivals, on TV (most bizarrely in comedian Luke McGregor’s documentary Luke Warm Sex) and has been featured in prominent newspapers and magazines. ​Now, as the Director of Books at, Australia’s largest online bookseller, he supports Australian writing in all its forms. He lives in Sydney with his wife, two children, three dogs, five cats, unnumbered gold fish and his overlarge book collection. His novel, The Girl on the Page, will be published by HarperCollins Australia in October, 2018.

Follow John: Twitter Website


  • Cathy bateman

    August 17, 2011 at 6:30 pm

    Worst choice ever conceived what about the lead from sons of anarchy Ottawa be a better choice than tc

  • Katee

    August 17, 2011 at 8:10 pm

    Tom Cruise! No!

    I think Adam Baldwin should play Jack Reacher. He’s 6’4″ with blue eyes and an intimidating manner.

    Much better than tiny Tom.

  • August 17, 2011 at 9:24 pm

    There is no getting over the lack of height with Tom…even if they do Photoshop him to give him muscles, he just ain’t Jack Reacher. And the worst part is, even if they do pull off all sorts of special effects, we still know it’s Tom Cruise – and the guy is a weed. Nothing slightly intimidating about him and the character won’t come across well.

  • MAX

    August 18, 2011 at 8:15 pm

    Why not dolph lundgren? Too old? perhaps. he’s got the right accent tho (ex-pat american). I think Mr Cruise wont let the role get disrespected. He’s the right age, and a good actor.

    If your looking for youth. Josh Hartnet (Tommy-Lee’ Jones’s love child) is 6’3 and could make an interesting transformation to Reacher.

  • Jane

    August 25, 2011 at 10:41 am

    NOT TOM CRUISE. He cannot act – he plays Tom Cruise in every movie he does. He cannot play Jack Reacher – there are so many other “actors” who could play the part beautifully but Tom Cruise is NOT one of them. He will ruin the character for me!!!!

  • Don Todorovic

    September 7, 2011 at 8:23 am

    Worst choice ever, Reacher is 6ft 5, and not a dweeb. For heavens sake Jason Stathem fits the bill better. Someone with presence and that fills
    door frame when he enters.

    Its like Cruise being sent in to play Conan the Barbarian, maybe Conan the barbie doll.

    Rethink this lunacy

  • Judy Doolan

    September 23, 2011 at 2:13 pm

    I think Vin Diesel would make a great Jack Reacher also. I don’t think I will be able to watch Tiny Tommy in this movie.

  • Shellie

    December 3, 2011 at 10:00 pm

    I’m really disappointed. Love Jack Reacher, dislike Tom Cruise. Jason Statham is good when he’s channeling an honourable vibe. He could do it. Lots of people could do it. But Tom is too famous just for being Tom, it would get in the way of his becoming JAck Reacher. Not happy Jan.

  • Shellie

    December 3, 2011 at 10:01 pm

    Not Tom.

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