Tom Cruise was in Rome to promote his latest film Monday, but his main mission was to rush back home to his bride-to-be, actress Katie Holmes, and their baby daughter and resume diaper duties.
The 43-year-old actor told a news conference in Rome ahead of the world premiere of “Mission: Impossible III” that he would cut short a European promotional tour that also includes Paris, where he and Holmes were engaged 10 months ago.
Cruise said his “mission impossible” was leaving his infant daughter and fiancee to promote his new film. He showed up in the middle of a news conference Monday that he hadn’t been expected to attend. The premiere of “Mission: Impossible III” was scheduled later that night.
“My mission impossible was to be here today,” the 43-year-old actor told reporters. “I didn’t want to come. My daughter was just born and I didn’t want to leave her and her mother.”
The Hollywood A-lister suggested that he wasn’t afraid to get his hands dirty.
“I changed her first,” he said.
“I change diapers all the time. I have to tell you I love it. We have a whole system worked out. It’s the ‘B and B’ --she does the breast feeding and I do the burping and changing the diapers. It’s teamwork. It’s fun.”
Cruise has two older children that he adopted during his marriage to actress Nicole Kidman -- 13-year-old Isabella and 11-year-old Connor. Suri was his first biological child.
“I wasn’t going to come and then Kate said, you know, ‘Go. Go.’ ... So I’m here. And I’ll be here for a few hours and then I’ll get back on an airplane and go back home to Kate and Suri.”
He was joined at the briefing by other stars from the film, including Oscar winner Philip Seymour Hoffman, who plays the “M:I3” arch-villain, a black-market arms dealer.
“Mission: Impossible III” is an adrenaline-packed two hours of death-dodging that sees the action star leaping from Shanghai skyscrapers and breaking into Vatican City.
Part of the film was shot in Rome, the city where Cruise and Holmes, known in tabloid shorthand as “TomKat,” first made their romance public in late April 2005, smiling for photographers during the David di Donatello awards.
The following month, the twice-divorced Cruise made a manic, couch-hopping profession of love for Holmes on “The Oprah Winfrey Show.” The couple got engaged in Paris in June.
‘It became more’
He was gushing again about Holmes in Rome, saying childbirth had deepened his love for her.
His whirlwind romance coincided with a new level of public outspokenness about his belief in Scientology, the church founded by science-fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard.
He did not say whether the couple adhered to the Church of Scientology’s practice of “silent birth” emphasizing a calm, quiet atmosphere in the delivery room.
“It was everything that we wanted it to be and more,” Cruise said of the birth last week of daughter Suri. “It was really very spiritual.”
A journalist asked whether Cruise had sent one of the publicists for his film to a Scientology center for two days.
“People are really interested in Scientology and every day ask me about it. So I say, ‘Yeah, if you want to know about Scientology, go find out about Scientology,” Cruise responded.
“That’s the best way to find out about something, for yourself.”