Kate Winslet broke Tom Cruise's underwater filming record on Avatar 2 set without realizing it

Tyler Aquilina
·3 min read

Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images, Leon Bennett/Getty Images

Does Kate Winslet get to join the Impossible Mission Force now?

We've known for a while now that the actress held her breath for more than seven minutes while shooting underwater scenes for Avatar 2. But Winslet didn't realize — nor did anyone else until recently, apparently — that this means she held her breath longer than Tom Cruise on the set of Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation, previously considered the record for underwater breath-holding on screen.

Cruise trained extensively to hold his breath for six and a half minutes to film an underwater stunt for the blockbuster, which means Winslet bested him by about 45 seconds. However, the Titanic actress was unaware that this feat had become public until a recent interview with Entertainment Tonight.

"It's so funny because I don't really read reviews or media things. I'm not on Instagram, like I'm just completely disconnected from that part of my life," Winslet said. "So all of this week and the week before, I've had people coming up to me at work saying, 'Oh my God, like seven minutes and 14 seconds? Like, what?!' And I'm going, 'What? Hang on, wait a minute. How do you know that?'"

"It was brilliant and I was very proud of myself and I'll probably never be able to do it again," she added. "That came at the end of four weeks worth of quite intense training and it was in the dive tank, it was in the training tank. But I loved it."

Winslet had previously revealed the seven-minute stat in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, noting, "I had to learn how to free-dive to play that role in Avatar, and that was just incredible. My longest breath hold was seven minutes and 14 seconds, like crazy, crazy stuff."

The actress can currently be seen alongside Saoirse Ronan in the Oscar contender Ammonite, now playing in select theaters. “Everything comes from an extremely steady, still place,” Winslet told EW of her character, Mary, in the romantic drama. “I had to focus a lot on that because movement and expression for Mary is used as communication. I had to be very careful about when those moments would be. We have to really choose when she would smile. She doesn’t smile that often. When she does, it’s an important vocal moment that comes from that expression of joy.”

Avatar 2, which recently "100 percent" completed filming, is currently scheduled to hit theaters Dec. 16, 2022. However, as we've learned repeatedly, that date is very much subject to change.

Related content: