I'm a big fan of Lee Child's Jack Reacher books. I love the character - Reacher, an ex-military cop, wants nothing but to be left alone, as he travels the countryside with nothing but the clothes on his back and the money in his wallet, but he always seems to get sucked into events that surround him, and he uses his training, his intelligence, and his sheer physicality when he has to to beat the bad guys. It shouldn't be a terribly difficult nut to crack when it comes to making movies adapted from these books. All the books are paced along similar lines and, with the exception of a few of them, don't really bleed into one another. It's to Child's credit that you could pick up any of the books in the series and read them without having to know the extensive back story. I've read all the Reacher books, and even now, many books later, Child has found a formula that works and keeps the character interesting and compelling.
Deadline is reporting that Skydance Productions and Christopher McQuarrie (good choice of director, by the way - WAY OF THE GUN is the exact type of film that would work for Reacher) are negotiating with Tom Cruise to play Jack Reacher in ONE SHOT. Apparently Cruise has the support of Lee Child to play the role - "Reacher's size in the books is a metaphor for an unstoppable force, which Cruise portrays in his own way," said Childs. If Cruise signs on, ONE SHOT would be made after he shoots OBLIVION with Joseph Kosinski.
Now, Reacher is 6'5". Cruise... isn't. He in no way matches the physicality of the role. When Reacher enters a room, you know it. Although he can operate in stealth, Reacher's sheer size is enough to intimidate everyone in the general area. But when it comes to taking down someone, Reacher's almost clinical in how he does it. No long strung out fistfights for him - he locates the weak spot in a person, and then simply, without passion, breaks it. If a screen fight with Reacher lasts more than 15 seconds, they got it wrong. He's highly tactical, dispassionate in action (except when he truly gets angry, then he's practically a robot), and nothing Cruise has made before in his film roster suggests that he's played anything like this.
That said, I'm not dismissing Cruise for the part entirely. He's definitely not anything approaching a first choice (I actually think Karl Urban would be excellent for it if he bulked up - Urban's 6'1") but I think if given the chance Cruise could find the intensity in the role. Before you all get riled up down there in Talkback, understand that there are many, many other actors I'd prefer to see play Reacher first. I just don't think Cruise is the worst possible choice. I know Dwayne Johnson's name has been thrown around a lot, and he matches the physicality, but I haven't seen anything in Johnson's acting roles that suggests that he could pull off the quiet nature of the character any more than Cruise could. There aren't a whole lot of 6'5" actors out there who could play the part convincingly and have the clout to open the film, so casting for Reacher, even without Cruise's involvement, would be difficult at best. I do think Chris McQuarrie is a terrific choice for director, though. I'm certain the movie is in good hands that way. Once casting is confirmed, we'll know more then.