What Is Motion Smoothing and Why Does Tom Cruise Hate It?

Tom Cruise

Tom Cruise | Ben Stansall/AFP/Getty Images)

Mission: Impossible star Tom Cruise is passionate about Scientology, acting, and stopping the use of motion smoothing. The actor recently made an announcement about fighting against using motion smoothing technology on televisions.

What is motion smoothing?

High definition televisions tend to make moving objects appear blurry. Motion smoothing, once called “liquid diarrhea” by Rian Johnson (director of Brick, Looper, and Star Wars: The Last Jedi), is a setting on many televisions meant to reduce the blur created when an object is in motion. In order to achieve a smoother picture, your TV will process individual frames, but will have to guess what the frame that goes between them should look like, reports the Independent.

Why Tom Cruise hates motion smoothing

Tom Cruise waves during the inauguration of the Church of Scientology

Tom Cruise | Pierre-Philippe Marcou/AFP/Getty Images

The problem with motion smoothing is that it creates frames that aren’t in the original picture. Consequently, this technology gives a movie an artificial look. Cruise and Mission: Impossible — Fallout director Christopher McQuarrie appeared in a video to address motion smoothing (also known as video interpolation). In the video, Cruise says this about motion smoothing:

The unfortunate side effect is that [motion smoothing] makes most movies look like they are shot on high-speed video rather than film. This is sometimes referred to as the soap opera effect. Most HDTVs come with this feature already on by default and turning it off requires navigating a set of menus with interpolation often referred to by another brand name.

Working together

Tom Cruise and director Christopher McQuarrie attend the U.S. Premiere of "Mission: Impossible - Fallout" at Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum on July 22, 2018 in Washington, DC.

Tom Cruise and director Christopher McQuarrie | Shannon Finney/Getty Images

McQuarrie chimed in, expressing his concern about motion smoothing: “If you own a modern high definition television, there’s a good chance you’re not watching movies the way the film maker intended, and the ability to do so is not simple for you to access.”

Cruise added that filmmakers are working with manufacturers to adjust how motion smoothing is activated on televisions. This will hopefully give viewers more control over how and when to use the feature. McQuarrie advises viewers to Google how to disable motion smoothing. In the video, they suggest googling “turn off motion smoothing [your brand of TV here].”

What’s next for Tom Cruise

Tom Cruise holding a microphone at a press conference.

Tom Cruise | Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images

So, what’s next for Tom Cruise? One place you won’t see Cruise anymore is in a Jack Reacher movie or television series. The film is being rebooted for television, but Cruise won’t be part of it. According to BBC, part of the reason is because the actor is lacking when it comes to height. Some readers complained Cruise wasn’t suited to play the part.

Cruise is currently filming Top Gun: Maverick, which is expected to be released in 2020. In this movie, Cruise reprises his role as Maverick from the 1986 film Top Gun. In the original film he plays a fighter pilot trying to secure the top pilot spot and win the heart of his flight instructor, Charlotte Blackwood, played by actress Kelly McGillis. Cruise is also gearing up to star in the film Luna Park.

Read more: How Tall is Tom Cruise and How Much is He Worth?

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