A lot has already been said about the Tom Cruise interview on Oprah Friday, and now that I’ve had a chance to watch it I wanted to add my opinion. I came away with about a 10-15% better opinion of Tom, which was largely based on the final part of the interview in which his insane grin and rehearsed answers fell away and you could see that he was a guy who really loves his family and has what sounds like a great appreciation for them and for his lifestyle.
Here are a few things that I noticed about the interview that haven’t been covered elsewhere. Star Magazine and US Weekly have some good summaries of Tom’s response to specific controversies. Oprah.com also has a decent overview, but some sections of the interview are not covered.
Tom calls Holmes, “Kate” throughout, she only appears in the beginning
Katie Holmes and her monotone cooing voice only appeared at the beginning of the interview, in which she says hello to Oprah, shows her the mudroom of their Telluride home, and says that she’s going to town with the kids. You can tell that Tom chose to have the interview in Telluride because their house has a cosy feel to it. This is surely a sharp contrast to their new $35 million Beverly Hills mansion that’s being renovated and decorated with no expense spared. Tom gave a tour of the home which included Suri’s cute playroom under the stairs and her giant room with kids’ toys and stuffed animals.
The first part of the interview was more of Tom spinning things to make it seem like he’s not the wild-eyed cult devotee we know and mock. He wasn’t that convincing at first and came across like I expected him to. To paraphrase: “The Scientology tapes were stolen, they were taken out of context, it’s a minority religion, etc.” He referred to Katie as “Kate” throughout and Oprah followed suit.
Reveals that Suri was born a year to the day after he met “Kate” Holmes
He said that he can’t articulate what Kate means to him, it’s so special, and when Oprah asked him if he’s ever felt this way about anyone before, he said “no.”
“Suri was born a year to the day that I met her. The same day, April 18, is the day that I met her, April 18 Suri was born, and it just kinda has that thing, you know and it was just something that just… it just gets spun and spun and spun.”
As for the way people mocked him after that, he said he just took it in stride and it was a “confluence of things.”
Uses “amazing” way too many times to describe Holmes’ family
Cruises’ response to Oprah’s question “How’s Kate’s family accepting you?” sounded like the stuff that wide-eyed Holmes was spouting before she learned how to speak in that soothing low tone about how fabulous their life is. He used “amazing” way too many times without much detail:
“They’re amazing. I love them. Oh I love them. They’re such amazing people, and you see why Kate is such an amazing woman. Incredible integrity and strength and they’re family.”
Tom tries to say he has joint custody of children with Nicole, but is totally unconvincing
When Oprah asked Tom if Bella and Connor got to see Nicole, he again gave general answers without specifics and seemed like he was full of it.
Oprah: “What’s your relationship like with Nicole now?”
Tom: “Good. Easy.”
Oprah: “I’d read that she’d been pushed out of the children’s lives. True or not true?”
Tom [laughs, bobs head]: “No, that’s ridiculous.”
Oprah: “The children still maintain a relationship with her and see her?”
Tom: “No they share custody.”
Oprah: “How is it.. Is there a time when everyone’s together, Kate and Nicole.. whatever?”
Tom: “No, it’s just so busy… it just hasn’t eventuated in that way.”
Oprah: “But the children get to see her regularly?”
Tom: “We share custody whenever. Whenever. That’s what it is.”
When Tom talks about Suri his rapport improves with Oprah and she really warms up to him and the conversation flows. He calls Suri “magical” and tells a cute story about how Kate had a Santa outfit custom made for him. Suri immediately realized it was him and said “No daddy!”
It seems like too little too late for Cruise, but he’ll have another whole show with Oprah on Monday in front of the studio audience. The guy is really charming and gracious to fans and he will probably make a much better impression at that point. He got through the tough questions already and now it’s on to wowing the women with his bright eyes and laughing personality. He might make us forget his antics for the time being, but I don’t know if it will be enough to save that Valkyrie movie or his cult. It’s time that the axe came down hard on Scientology, and Cruise has been their apologist for way too long.
Here are the videos.
If you don’t have time: short clip where Cruise gives the quotes mentioned above
Full Interview follows
(some clips have commercials which are easily skipped by moving the cursor)
Introduction: Katie says goodbye and Tom shows Oprah the house:
Part 1 of interview:
Part 2 of interview: