Edge of Tomorrow, Tom Cruise’s summer sci-fi movie about a reluctant soldier who’s cursed with the gift of reliving the same day that he’s killed by aliens over and over again—until he navigates through battle safely—wasn’t the blockbuster that it might have been. It inched past $100 million in the U.S. and grossed a total of $369 million, but critics heaped praise on Cruise, whose Major William Cage reminded some of A Few Good Men‘s lackadaisical Daniel Kaffee, and Emily Blunt, who played a heroic supersoldier with a sixth sense for slaughtering the spidery aliens that invaded Earth.
The film’s lukewarm box-office reception was held up as evidence of Cruise’s diminished clout, but those pundits weren’t in London in November 2012, when the city shut down Trafalgar Square so that Cruise and co. could land a helicopter right in the heart of one of the city’s biggest tourist attractions. “In the history of England, a helicopter has never landed in Trafalgar Square,” says director Doug Liman, in a Blu-ray extra. “And Tom just gives one of his smiles, and next thing you know, [location manager] Sue Quinn comes back and says, ‘Yes, we’re going to land a helicopter in Trafalgar Square.'”