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in advance Archives -

in advance Archives -

Mack Chico


2008/08/28 at 12:00am

Tom Cruise defends ‘Valkyrie’

Tom Cruise defends 'Valkyrie'

“I LOVE Paula Wagner but she wants to produce elsewhere and in her own venue and I don’t intend to stand in her way. I’ll say this of her leaving United Artists — whatever Paula wants is what I want her to have! And I hope we’ll continue working together on future projects.” So spoke Tom Cruise on the phone with me this week. He added, cryptically: “I don’t run United Artists; I just own it.” It’s always fun to talk to Tom who tells me that his now “controversial” film about the German resistance attempt to assassinate Adolph Hitler in World War II is coming out on Dec. 26. All those critics who have panned the project, Valkyrie,” in advance, should know that nothing can deter Tom from his belief in this story. He says, “It’s original. It’s suspenseful. The writers Chris McQuarrie and Nathan Alexander are just great and I can’t say enough good things about the director Bryan Singer. I first met him at the ‘Mission: Impossible’ premiere and we’ve been hoping to work together ever since. (Singer is the man who did “X-Men” and “Superman Returns.”

WHEN I asked Tom why he felt so many people in the business have gone after the “Valkyrie” project as if it’s a bad idea or something historically obscene, he sighed: “It just doesn’t make sense to me either. The moment I read the screenplay I knew it was an important story and as it’s a true tale of heroic resistance to one of the great villains of history, I can’t imagine that people won’t want to see it.”

I ASKED Tom if he will continue doing comedies on the heels of his “character” impersonation as a fat, horrid studio executive in Ben Stiller‘s “Tropic Thunder?” He laughed, “Well, I’m always looking for something new and Ben’s movie is hilarious. He and I are old friends and he is a really good director, so originally I said I’d do it just for friendship. But it turned out great. I actually love comedy and I did it in ‘Risky Business‘ so I’ll do more if it presents itself. I’m also always looking for a good love story and I think I have one in a coming international thriller called ‘The Tourist.’ I believe I will be doing that.”

I told Tom I was looking forward to his wife’s debut on Broadway in the revival of Arthur Miller‘s “All My Sons.” He said, “Things are going really well for Katie and we’ll see you on opening night, Sept. 18.” I congratulated moviedom’s big star on his little baby girl. He began to burble: “Oh, yes, she’s so charming; she’s so beautiful; she’s just great!” (That was Daddy talking, not the formidable icon who has made billions of dollars for Hollywood since 1983.)

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