Watch the Titles

Mission: Impossible II

Garson Yu, yU+co (2000)

A short title sequence that captures the movie’s key themes using a series of visual metaphors. The hybrid main title uses a combination of 3D imagery for the movie title, mixed with distorted live action images that were created with optical effects.

Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) is on a mission to find and destroy a very lethal lab-created virus called Chimera, named after the ferocious Greek fire-breathing mythical mutant made up of a lion’s head, a goat’s body and a serpent’s tail. The anti-virus is called Bellerophon, after the Greek hero/monster who slayed the Chimera while riding the winged horse Pegasus. Garson Yu visualizes these Greek references using optical effects that were very popular at that time. Yu: “We captured images through the plexiglas, and then turn the plexiglass to create distortions. Then we will hit light on the object.” The same technique was used for yU+co’s title sequence for Shanghai Knights.

The color red refers to blood – the scientist who created the virus injects himself with it. The burning fuse obviously refers to many an ‘explosive’ situation in the movie. At the same it symbolizes the time pressure Hunt is under. The red dress refers to Hunt’s partner and love interest Nyah.

Year of production


About Garson Yu

Garson Yu started his career in NYC as a freelance designer at RGA. In 1993, Garson moved to LA and joined Imaginary Forces as co-creative director alongside partner Kyle Cooper. In 1998 Yu founded yU+co, a design company specializing in motion graphics for film and TV.

More about Garson Yu

Full credits

Title designer
Garson Yu/yU+co
Inferno artist
Todd Mesher
Daniel Strange
3D lead artist
Bryan Thombs
Fred Fouquet
Director (film)
John Woo
Production companies (film)

Paramount Pictures (presents), Cruise/Wagner Productions, Munich Film Partners & Co. MI2 Productions

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