According to Variety, industry people in China say Mission: Impossible 3 is set to shoot for up to a month in Shanghai in November. The film's climactic final scenes will apparently be lensed in the cultural capital of China.
The country will also be used for a fair proportion of the pre-production work, some plate shots and other second unit work.
Locals suggest the film, being helmed by first-time feature director J.J. Abrams for Cruise/Wagner and Paramount, will spend up to $10 million of its reported $150 million budget in China.
While it is an open secret in China that the pic and star Tom Cruise will be in town, attempts to confirm this on the record have met with regular denials. Chinese insiders say the wall of silence can be maintained because the pic does not appear to be partnering with a local studio.
The denials may also be explained by hesitation over the spectacular nature of the planned scenes.
"I know that they've had issues about a helicopter, but I simply cannot believe that the Shanghai authorities will not move mountains to make sure that this film happens on their turf," said a China-based production executive.
Asian-American Maggie Q (Rush Hour 2, Around The World in 80 Days) recently joined the cast, which also includes Keri Russell, Ving Rhames, Laurence Fishburne, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Michelle Monaghan.