On the same day that Paramount announced it was severing ties with Tom Cruise:
Viacom Inc.’s Paramount Pictures unit is ending its 14-year relationship with Tom Cruise’s film production company because of the actor’s offscreen behavior, the company’s chairman said in an interview with the Wall Street Journal.
Sumner Redstone, Viacom chairman, said the behavior of the star of the “Mission: Impossible” series and “Top Gun” was unacceptable to the company, according to the Wall Street Journal story e-mailed to reporters.
Cruise, one of Hollywood’s biggest stars, has been known more recently for his antics on U.S. television talk shows, including jumping up and down on Oprah Winfrey’s couch to declare his love for Katie Holmes and criticizing the use of antidepressant drugs.
“As much as we like him personally, we thought it was wrong to renew his deal,” Redstone was quoted as saying in the Wall Street Journal. “His recent conduct has not been acceptable to Paramount.”
South Park” creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone have set two live-action films at Paramount.
Parker and Stone, who have re-christened their Par-based shingle Important Pictures, will first make the Jeff Roda-scripted high school comedy “My All-American.” They plan to follow with “Giant Monsters Attack Japan!,” a film scripted by J.F. Lawton (“Under Siege”) that will combine live-action with the “rubber suit” techniques made popular in Asian imports like “Godzilla.”
Parker will direct each film and Stone produce; both will work on the scripts with the writers. Sean Daniel and Nickelodeon will also be producers on “Giant Monsters.”