Tom Cruise is going through a bit of a rough patch at the moment – what with being ridiculed for his crazy religion and his suspicious girlfriend and child – so what better way to spend an afternoon mercilessly kicking him when he's down?
That's not us talking for once, that's elderly Paramount bigwig Sumner Redstone talking. Earlier in the year Sumner Redstone hit the news for giving Tom Cruise the shove from all Paramount productions forever, and now he's given his reasons behind the decision in an interview with Vanity Fair. And, contrary to popular belief, Tom Cruise wasn't fired from Paramount because of his excessive fees – Tom Cruise was fired from Paramount because all women hate Tom Cruise. Well it's either 'all women' or 'the middle-aged wife of an 83-year-old billionaire' – but they're both more or less the same, right?
Tom Cruise is currently going through a quiet reinvention. Gone are the crazy Tom Cruise days of proposing to girls in Paris and buying dangerous pregnancy machinery and giving birth in silence and eating placentas and hiding babies to everyone but David Beckham – that's all a bunch of stuff that the old Tom Cruise would do. The new Tom Cruise tastefully poses for pictures with his daughter and fastidiously prepares for his wedding to Katie Holmes.
Tom Cruise is also reportedly trying to attach himself to a number of intelligent indie movies to prove to the public that he's an actor first and not a nobsack with a golden baby poo that sets men's penises on fire. A lot of this is due to Tom Cruise getting fired by Paramount or, to be more precise, getting fired by 83-year-old Viacom chief Sumner Redstone, who seemed to be under the impression that Tom Cruise was a bit mental. Following the sacking by Sumner Redstone, Tom Cruise's lawyers got a bit narky and then Tom found someone to give him movie money. And it all blew over.
Until now, that is. The new edition of Vanity Fair contains an interview with Sumner Redstone where he seems to be doing his absolute best to make himself look like a confused old man in front of as many people as possible. Mainly Sumner Redstone accomplishes this through admitting that it was his wife Paula's hatred of Tom Cruise that got him sacked:
"He was embarrassing the studio. And he was costing us a lot of money. Paula, like women everywhere, had come to hate him. The truth of the matter is, I did listen to her… His behaviour was entirely unacceptable to Paula and to the rest of the world. He just didn't turn one [woman] off. He turned off all women, and a lot of men… When did I decide [to fire him]? I don't know. When he was on the 'Today' show? When he was jumping on a couch at 'Oprah'? He changed his handler, you know, to his sister – not a good idea. [Firing Cruise] sent a message to the rest of the world that the time of the big star getting all this money is over. And it is! I would like to think that what I did, or what we did, has had a salutary effect on the rest of the industry."
Which is kind of a strange thing to say, since the only real thing to have changed from Tom Cruise getting the boot from Paramount is that Brad Pitt might be in Mission: Impossible IV instead of him, and will get paid $40 million for the trouble. That's hardly stopping 'the big star getting all this money' is it? Still, that's only a tiny portion of the Sumner Redstone interview. You'll have to buy Vanity Fair to read Sumner Redstone's thoughts on how young all these policemen look and how modern music is all just bang bang bang these days.