Cruise tosses sister

Nov 08, 2005 by Ian Evans

After a summer that saw him change from top star to top punchline, Tom Cruise has hired a new publicist while shifting his sister’s responsibilities.

Lee Anne DeVette, Cruise’s sister, has been handling the media chores for her famous sibling ever since he tossed his former flack, Pat Kingsley. Kingsley, who was able to wield great influence over the media and stop them questioning Cruise about his religion, fell out of favor with the actor when he decided he wanted to talk about Scientology.

Tom’s actions since then have made him the butt of jokes and now Rogers & Cowan’s Paul Bloch has been called in to put the fire’s out. The story being sold is that DeVette is now putting her full efforts into the actor’s charitable affairs. Cruise released a statement saying that, “Lee Anne has done a wonderful job on behalf of myself and Cruise-Wagner…but she has always expressed a desire to oversee and expand the day-to-day activities of my charitable endeavors.”

DeVette oversaw the whole media fiasco that started when Tom announced that he was in love with Katie Holmes, just as the duo both had big films coming out. Tom, who usually deflected personal questions, was hopping up and down on Oprah’s couch, making out with Holmes on red carpets around the world, and generally taking the attention away from the film he was supposed to promote, War of the Worlds.

The press was already questioning the relationship when Cruise really went haywire in the press. No longer being quiet about his faith, Cruise started pushing Scientology’s attacks on psychiatry. He had an intense interview with Access Hollywood’s Billy Bush where he said that there was no science behind psychiatry. When Bush asked how he responded to people who said that they were helped by therapy and used Brooke Shield’s post-partum depression as an example, Cruise went off. He said that Shields, who was open about taking Paxil to deal with postpartum depression, didn’t know what she was talking about. He said that she should have used vitamins instead and then took a shot at her career saing, “Here is a woman, and I care about Brooke Shields because I think she is an incredibly talented woman. You look at, where has her career gone?”

The attacks on psychiatry — and Shields — continued on NBC’s Today Show where an intense Cruise called interviewer Matt Lauer glib and told him that “You don’t know the history of psychiatry. I do.”

Paul Bloch has his work cut out for him.