Not since Cruise jumped up and down on Oprah’s couch declaring his love to now-wife Katie Holmes has the actor appeared so looney.
In the new video, a manic-looking Cruise gushes about his love for scientology.
The video has emerged at the same time as a controversial, unauthorised biography.
It contains startling allegations, which have been denied by The Church of Scientology.
Cruise, one of the most high-profile members of the group, had no immediate comment to make on the book, according to his publicist’s office, while the church described the book as “a bigoted, defamatory assault replete with lies”.
In the book, penned by British journalist and writer Andrew Morton, who lifted the lid on Princess Diana’s marriage in Diana: Her True Story, a mostly unfavourable portrait is painted of Cruise as a calculating control freak.
However, in the video, Cruise says as a scientologist you just “see things they way they are, in all its glory, in all its complexity.”
The Church of Scientology, which comes across as the real subject of the book, issued a lengthy statement rebuffing some of the book’s most lurid allegations.
It dismissed the contents of the book as “vicious sensationalism of the lowest order” filled with “false and scandalous allegations”.
“Insinuations that Mr Cruise is second-in-command of the Church are not only false, they are ludicrous,” it added.
In response to perhaps the most bizarre claim of the book it said: “Is it possible Katie (Holmes – Cruise’s wife) and Tom’s baby could be the vessel for L Ron Hubbard’s (the founder of Scientology) spirit?
“The church does not, and never has believed any newborn is the reincarnation or the offspring of its founder, Mr Hubbard.”
“Was Katie impregnated by L Ron Hubbard’s frozen sperm? … As distasteful as it is to have to say it, Mr Hubbard’s sperm was never frozen.”
The book routinely refers to scientology as a “cult” saying it “likes to market itself, falsely as an ‘applied religion”‘.
Cruise, meanwhile, is described as “a movie messiah who reflects and refracts the fears and doubts of our times, trading on the unfettered power of modern celebrity, our embrace of religious extremism and the unnerving scale of globalisation”.
Litigation surrounding the book seems a distinct possibility. It is not being published in Britain for legal reasons, but the Church of Scientology is reportedly considering legal action against US publishers St Martin’s Press.
The church did not comment on the reports when contacted today.
Seemingly aware of Cruise’s history of libel challenges, the book quotes the star as telling Harper’s Bazaar, “I don’t like suing people … I take no pleasure in it.
“But there comes a point where it’s beyond silly; it’s destructive. I will sue. I will sue every single time that I can until it stops. And when they stop, I will stop.”
Regardless of possible legal manoeuvres, the buzz surrounding the book, entitled Tom Cruise: An Unauthorised Biography, had already helped propel the book to number nine in Amazon.com’s list of top sellers.
But Pan Macmillan, the Australian sister company of the US publishers, will not publish the book here and at least one major bookseller, Dymocks, will not stock any version of the book.
However, Angus & Robertson and several independent bookstores will stock the US version of the book.
Described in the book’s dustjacket as “a leading authority on modern celebrity”, Morton has also written books about pop icon Madonna and former England soccer captain David Beckham and his wife and Spice Girl, Victoria Beckham.
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