Iron Man 3 scriptwriter Drew Pearce has agreed to write Mission: Impossible 5, the fifth instalment for Tom Cruise’s secret agent character Ethan Hunt.

As well as Pearce, Christopher McQuarrie, who directed Cruise in Jack Reacher, has entered negotiations to direct, while JJ Abrams’ Bad Robot Company will produce, alongside Cruise.

The plot for the fifth instalment of the spy franchise is being kept a closely guarded secret, but is expected to be as popular as the previous 4 films – since 1996 Mission: Impossible has grossed over $2 billion.

The fourth film in the series Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol, earned $700 million worldwide and became action veteran Cruise's highest-earning film ever.

Production is expected to begin on MI5 this autumn after Cruise finishes filming Warner Bros. The Man From U.N.C.L.E., a big screen adaptation of the cult 1960s TV show,

Check out Tom Cruise as Ethan Hunt in the very first Mission: Impossible