He is best known for his action roles, but the Hollywood superstar occasionally steps outside his comfort zone. Here’s five Tom Cruise films in which he excelled by being cast against type.
Born On The Fourth July (1989)
After failing to gain nominations for his performances in Oscar winners Color Of Money (1986) and Rain Man (1988), Cruise deservedly received an Academy Award for his moving turn as Ron Kovic, who goes from being a cleancut US marine to bitter paraplegic Vietnam War peace activist.
Paul Thomas Anderson’s bleak ensemble drama boasted some heavy-hitters – Jason Robards, Julianne Moore, William H Macy, Philip Seymour Hoffman to name but a few – but Cruise more than held has own as a sleazy self-help guru. His fearless performance remains a career best.
Aside from his turn as Lestat in Interview With The Vampire – and the critics are still divided on that one – this is probably the closest he has got to playing a villain, albeit an oddly sympathetic one. Nevertheless, Cruise brought both charm and menace to the role of a hitman who embroils an innocent cab driver on his latest assignment.
Tropic Thunder (2008)
With his bald skullcap and paunch, the Hollywood pin-up was almost unrecognisable in this starry comedy about a group of vain actors getting lost in the jungle while shooting a Vietnam War epic. As the monstrous, hip hop loving studio exec Lee Grossman, Cruise almost stole the show – make sure you stick around for his dancing to Get Back by Ludacris over the screen credits.
Rock Of Ages (2012)
Cruise had a blast as the debauched, egotistical rock star Stacee Jaxx, whose band could save a beloved LA music venue from closure. The real revelation here, though, was his singing – channeling the spirit of Jon Bon Jovi and Axl Rose, his versions of songs like Wanted Dead Or Alive and I Want To Know What Love Is were spot on.