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June 19, 2005 - Cruise, Holmes, Dump Cruz and Klein, Climb Eiffel

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This just in from Our Man in Paris, Ric Erickson, editor of MetropoleParis:

Special to Just Above Sunset

PARIS: Friday, June 17, 2005 - A RARE pre-dawn event took place Friday morning at the top of the Tour Eiffel when short screen actor Tom Cruise, 42, proposed to marry Katie Holmes, 26, because it was his first visit to the world famous French landmark.

Later, without sleeping, Mr. Cruise held an early-morning press conference in the company of Ms. Holmes, to announce the stupendous news to Associated Press and other news organizations anxious for an early-morning trivia scoop.  "Yes, I did it," he said.  Then Ms. Holmes showed reporters a blindingly huge diamond engagement ring as big as the Ritz.

Mr. Cruise, slightly giddy with over-emotion, said it was a 'magnificent day' for him, repeating that he's engaged, and when asked why he picked the Tour Eiffel to pop the question he replied, 'because it's there.'  He added that the wedding date hadn't been arranged with the press yet.

The two actors were in Paris promoting their respective new movies.

Mr. Cruise is flogging Spielberg's 'The War of the Worlds' while Ms. Holmes is at bat for 'Batman Begins,' which opens next Wednesday in Paris and throughout France.  Author H.G. Wells could not be reached for comment.

After the dawn press meeting the two beautiful actors dived into a limo and raced off to promote the two movies in Marseille, which is close to the Riviera.  Earlier, in Berlin, Mr. Cruise denied that the romance which has been bubbling along since April, was a publicity stunt designed to get free space in tasteless tabloids with big circulations.

Ms. Holmes apparently denied this too, but apparently said that she intended to embrace Scientology, which is classed as an oddball sect in France and is not a recognized religion.  Despite this some American actors closely identified with the group show no hesitation about promoting their movies here because they make a lot of money.




A couple of new details emerged on tonight's TV-news.  Cruise is apparently a major economic motor for the cinemas in Marseille.  They threw him a fine party down there, and he seemed to enjoy it too much - or, are his drugs always wearing off?  Between looking stupidly stunned, he lights up with these crazed grins.  Maybe there was too much oxygen on the TGV.



Copyright 2005 – Ric Erickson, MetropoleParis





Reactions from the Just Above Sunset online salon – the email group –


From the Wall Street attorney –


The truly sad thing is that I can't tell if this is true or a joke.  What is truly even more sad is that I really don't care.


The response from Hollywood to Wall Street?


It's true, it's true, it's really true….


See Reuters, as they covered it here -


And the French do consider scientology a sect, not a religion – which no one in Hollywood understands…


The BBC five years ago -


A government committee in France has recommended dissolving the Church of Scientology there, on the grounds that its activities threatens public order.

A report submitted to the Prime Minister, Lionel Jospin, described the church as a "totalitarian" sect that kept files containing personal information on its members.

The head of the committee, Alain Vivien, said that while the committee opposed a blanket ban on what he termed sects, it favoured dissolving "extremely dangerous" organisations such as the Church of Scientology. …


And see this (June 9 – a few weeks ago) -


Hollywood star Tom Cruise refuses to accept there is a negative attitude to Scientology, insisting the public are curious to find out more about the Ron L Hubbard-founded faith.

Cruise, John Travolta, Kelly Preston, Kirstie Alley and Jenna Elfman are among the famous followers of the controversial faith, which has been labeled as a "cult" by some critics.

On Australian TV show 60 Minutes last weekend, interviewer Peter Overton confronted Cruise over the pre-interview requirement set by the actor's publicists that Overton visit a Scientology centre.

Overton said: "Tom Cruise's office has asked me to come to the Scientology Celebrity Centre in Los Angeles to embark on a four-hour crash course in Scientology and what it's all about.

"Why, then, was it a condition of me talking to you today that I had to spend quite an intense four and a half hours in the Church of Scientology here in Los Angeles?"

Cruise responded: "You didn't have to. You could have said no."

After Overton claimed "there's a perception out there that it gets bad press: cult-like secrecy, controlling", Cruise leapt to the defence of Scientology, saying: "Ignorance breeds bigotry, breeds racism, okay?

"You have been there and you've seen it for yourself."

When asked how he felt about people describing the religion's followers as "a bunch of lunatics", Cruise answered: "No-one's ever said that to me, but that's not the perception out there."

Cruise went on to compare the "bigotry" against Scientology to Islamophobia, adding: "I think it's appalling that they're still burning synagogues in France.

"I think it's appalling how certain Muslims are being treated. I think it's absolutely appalling when we talk about freedom of speech and human rights."


We're in deep waters here.


Bob Patterson, our odd columnist, says the waters are really deep.



The question is not whether this story will be on both the BBC World News and NBC's Evening news - if it is a slow "dog day" news-wise, it probably will make NBC, but I would imagine BBC's celebrity tidbit for today will be about the Saturday night "thank you" party Michael Jackson is giving for his supporters - the really "heavy-man" question is: (If he were alive) how would Jean Paul Sartre have covered the Cruise news conference.


Obviously, Cruise is displaying his propensity for existentialism by choosing to ask Ms. Holmes for her hand in marriage.  Obviously be choosing to be a married man, he is subtly endorsing traditional family values.  Obviously by choosing the romantic setting of the Eiffel Tower, he is showing that he is a sensitive male and a traditional romantic.  Obviously by holding a news conference he is endorsing Marshall McLuhan's "The Medium is the Message" world-village premise.  Obviously be causally mentioning the two movies (the new Batman and War of the Worlds) the couple is affirming their belief that life will continue well into the future and that capitalism (and democracy) works.


Would Sartre catch all these subtleties?  Would Camus dissent?


This will obviously crowd the war in Iraq and that out-of-control Senator guy from Illinois off the evening news.  Can't you just see Bush smiling approvingly?


Oh, it's not THAT deep.  And all the media covered it.





The question is what is such celebrity news doing in Just Above Sunset – is this a tabloid?


Celebrity news doesn't appear here much, not even Brad Pitt stuff, even what he said in Africa about the starving children whist there with the lovely daughter of Jon Voigt.  Sean Penn is in Iran at the moment, playing at being a left-wing journalist - not in a movie, as he's actually reporting for the San Francisco Chronicle.  And what's this about Katie Holmes converting to scientology because she's tight with Tom Cruise, who embarrassed himself so badly on the Oprah Winfrey Show a few weeks back, jumping on the sofa and screaming he loved Katie, then dissolving into a giggling mess?  Shouldn't a publication from Hollywood cover such things?


Yeah.  Later.


The JAS editorial policy is now this: JAS covers what the editor likes, and publishes Bob Patterson's columns without restrictions, and posts Ric's Paris columns, and Don Smith's Paris photos, and Phillip Raines' treehouse stuff, and so on... and if there's an audience that likes the mix, fine.  If not?  Fine, as they can go where they find what they like.  No trying to be relevant or popular.  It is what it is.  The counter on the home page now reads about 100,500 visitors since it was installed eighteen months ago.  That'll do.


And Tom Cruise being odd in France is amusing.


Copyright 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 - Alan M. Pavlik
The inclusion of any text from others is quotation
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This issue updated and published on...

Paris readers add nine hours....