This is a reworked version of the Mission: Impossible television theme song, which was originally composed by Lalo Schifrin and was known as the "Burning Fuse." What became the theme was written for a chase scene, but Mission: Impossible creator Bruce Geller liked it better than what Schifrin wrote for the main theme and used it instead. The theme was recorded for the 1996 movie starring Tom Cruise.
Clayton and Mullen are the bass player and drummer, respectively, of U2. It was offered to U2 as a group, but Bono and The Edge did not have time to do it. The updated techno version changes the 5/4 time signature to a more club friendly 4/4. Batman composer Danny Elfman, who rescored the theme for the movie, told Entertainment Weekly: "A great bass line is a great bass line in any era. You can always do something fresh with it."
The success of this song prompted producers to have Limp Bizkit rework the theme for the movie's sequel in 2000. "Take A Look Around," a nu metal treatment based on the theme's classic riff, didn't make the Hot 100 but peaked at #3 in the UK.
Rather than rework the existing theme for the third installment, Kanye West wrote "Impossible" as an additional theme. The rest of the films in the series - Ghost Protocol, Rogue Nation, and Fallout - didn't produce versions from contemporary artists.
This was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Pop Instrumental Performance, but lost to "The Sinister Minister" by Bela Fleck and the Flecktones.