Image: VINWiki/YouTube (screengrab)

Hollywood is still a place where magic can happen, but only thanks to the hard work of people like John Ficarra. Ficarra says he used to own a company that, in 2006, helped give Tom Cruise a vehicular smorgasbord to drive through New York City to promote Mission: Impossible III. Included in that smorgasbord was a Saleen Mustang S281, which had to be shipped from California to New Jersey in a single night. Here’s how Ficarra made that happen.

As part of its “Car Stories” series, YouTube channel Vin Wiki filmed Ficarra talking about how his former company, Creative Film Cars, worked with the Church of Scientology and UPS to get Tom Cruise a Saleen Mustang in a single night.

Ficarra says that, to understand Cruises wishes, he had to work through the Church of Scientology. Officials, Ficarra says, originally indicated that Tom wanted a Bugatti Veyron for the night of the Mission: Impossible III premiers. After frantically trying to find the supercar (the Veyron had just come out), Tom’s representatives from the church told Ficarra two days before the event that the actor actually wanted a Saleen Mustang.

So Ficarra rang up a bunch of package delivery companies and moving companies, eventually settling on UPS. After dropping Cruise’s name, Ficarra got UPS to overnight a Saleen Mustang from Los Angeles to Newark for the “reasonable” price of $13,000. Eventually the car showed up looking like this:

Image: VINWiki/YouTube (screengrab)

After the UPS crew celebrated and got its photo in front of the car, and after Ficarra had someone take a look at a small dent, Cruise was able to pull off his over-the-top entrance to three movie openings in Manhattan on the same day.

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Cruise took a helicopter to the West Side, rode a motorcycle to the first premier, from which he left in the Saleen and “[ripped] a donut.” He then drove the car to the Hudson river, where he took a speedboat to Harlem, at which point he drove a Maybach to the second premier. After that, a fire truck filled with 911 first responders took Cruise down the East side to the final premier.

Ficarra’s story provides interesting insight into an industry that many of us probably wonder about. I, for one, often think: “How the heck did he get all these exotic vehicles for this stunt?” Apparently the answer is: lots of people busted their ass to make it happen.