Christopher McQuarrie on the writing of ‘Valkyrie’

According to Christopher McQuarrie, "Valkyrie" was supposed to be a tiny, fast-moving production. The Oscar-winning screenwriter of "The Usual Suspects" got his friend, "Suspects" and "X-Men" director Bryan Singer, interested in filming McQuarrie's tense, unapologetically old-school World War II screenplay (co-written with Nathan Alexander) -- which recounts a failed conspiracy by German officers to kill Hitler, take over the government and end the war in July 1944.

"Bryan and I were going to make this as a little movie between two giant studio movies that Bryan would make," says McQuarrie. "This was going to be $17.5 million, a little project we were gonna have fun doing, and it was going to be us getting back to our roots: 'From the creators of "The Usual Suspects" comes a different kind of lineup.'"

Fate -- or, more specifically, Tom Cruise -- had other plans.

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