Today: February 22, 2024

Knight and Day Feature

Tom Cruise stars along Cameron Diaz in James Mangold’s Knight & Day, DVD & Blu-ray is out on release this week. With rumours that his wife Katie Holmes is pregnant with their second child, perhaps we can already anticipation the inevitable publicity stunt to ensure widespread media coverage …

Cruise stars along Cameron Diaz in James Mangold’s Knight & Day, DVD & Blu-ray is out on release this week. With rumours that his wife Katie Holmes is
pregnant with their second child, perhaps we can already anticipation the
inevitable publicity stunt to ensure widespread media coverage. After all, Tom
Cruise’s life may be a media circus, but he is the ringmaster. Joe West rounds up the Hollywood star’s
best efforts.


(Mission: Impossible III, Valkyrie) has never been one to
shy away from the limelight, and in the last decade he has been involved in
some of the most memorable and moderately mad publicity stunts in the history
of Hollywood. In some cases his behaviour has alienated and shocked his fans,
but he has proved that there is no such thing as bad publicity, and continues
to make millions at the box office. Here are five of his most significant
publicity stunts, ordered chronologically.

The publicity stunt for which Tom Cruise will always be remembered occurred
during the spring of 2005. His appearance on Oprah Winfrey’s chat show
has been described as amongst the most surprising moments in TV history, and
will live on in infamy. Cruise repeatedly declared his strong feelings for
then-girlfriend Katie Holmes whilst literally bouncing around the
studio and eliciting waves of gasps and laughter from the audience. His most
flamboyant and subsequently iconic action was jumping up onto the guests’ sofa
while expressing the depths of his love.

On the surface this may sound like a genuine act caused by infatuation and a
life lived in the spotlight, but afterwards many people believed that Cruise
was exaggerating his behaviour in order to drum up interest in War of the

(Steven Spielberg, 2005), which launched a few months later. If
this was indeed his intention, it worked wonders as the film took nearly 600
million dollars at the box office, and parodies of his behaviour rippled across
popular culture.

Mission Impossible III2.
Less than a year after the Oprah event Cruise was back on top of furniture in
the name of love and publicity. He scaled a chair to once more express his
enduring adoration of Holmes, this time in front of an audience of executives
at search giant Yahoo! By this point Holmes was pregnant with the couple’s
first child, which might explain the enthusiastic arm-wrestling competition
that he entered into with members of the audience
at the same event. These two
odd acts did not make the same impact as his original Oprah appearance, perhaps
because people had begun to expect this kind of thing, and so Cruise had to
step up the publicity for Mission Impossible III (J.J. Abrams, 2006) to
the next level.

The Cruise-related publicity stunt that partly ensured the success of M:I III
occurred at the US premiere of the movie. Taking place in New York, Cruise
decided to take six different modes of transport to arrive at the premiere
venue, including a sports car and a speed boat, along with the slightly more
pedestrian options of a subway and a taxi. This plan went slightly awry when it
was replicated for the LA premiere. Cruise attempted to drive a Bugatti Veyron
up to the red carpet
, but was forced to pull a wide three point turn in front
of thousands of fans due to the vehicle’s limited turning circle. This was
hardly a fit entrance for a super spy action hero, but Cruise managed to brush
it off with his whiter than white grin.

One of the strangest stunts that Cruise has ever pulled came during the 2010
MTV Movie Awards, at which he donned full prosthetic makeup and a fat suit in
order to dance onstage with Jennifer Lopez. He was portraying Les
Grossman, his eccentric movie producer character that appeared as a cameo in
2008’s ensemble comedy Tropic Thunder (Ben Stiller, Jack
Black, Robert Downey Jr
.) The reasons for this exhibitionist
performance, in which Cruise showed off the dancing talent that has not shone
since Risky Business (Paul Brickman, 1983) has never quite
become apparent, since Tropic Thunder had long since left cinemas and arrived
on DVD and Blu Ray. This has since marked the stunt as perhaps the most
perplexing in Cruise’s career, but it certainly adds to the intrigue of the man
behind the brand.


Cruise’s next movie release is comedy action caper Knight and Day (James
2010), in which he partners with the ever-charming Cameron Diaz (Shrek
Forever After, The Box
) Whilst courting the US media in Spain, the
pair exhibited their abilities to cope with movie stunts without the need for
doubles, and in the process scared several reporters half to death. On a closed
street in Seville, Diaz and Cruise got behind the wheel of a car and larked
about with journalists strapped in beside them, performing evasive manoeuvres
and over the top donuts that both delighted and petrified the gathered hacks.
The confidence of the stars was clear, as they were appearing live on TV in the
US at the time of the stunt. Watch this space for the UK premiere.

Marcia Degia - Publisher

Marcia Degia, who has worked in the media industry for more than 20 years, is the Publishing Editor of KOL Social Magazine. See website:

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