It appears things have come full circle for Ethan Hunt, the hero of the Mission: Impossible movies, a.k.a. Tom Cruise’s one and only movie franchise. In the first film — released 15 years ago, just to blow your mind for a moment — Hunt was “disavowed” as an IMF agent after a mission gone horribly wrong. Well, now it’s 2011, and the stakes appear much, much higher: In the new trailer for Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol (out Dec. 16), we learn that no less than the Kremlin has gone kablooey. The fallout? As a grim-faced Tom Wilkinson explains, “The president has initiated ‘ghost protocol,'” meaning every single IMF agent everywhere has been disavowed. Burn.

After that, the trailer is a whirlwind of international action and intrigue, including appearances by Mission: Impossible III alum Simon Pegg, and M:I newbies Jeremy Renner, Paula Patton, and a blink-and-you’ll-miss-him Josh Holloway. It all ends with an extended look at what is sure to be a climactic stunt on the Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world — which is to say, no, that building is not CGI. Check out the trailer for the film, produced by J.J. Abrams and directed by Brad Bird (The Incredibles), below:

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