Tom Cruise, Producing Partner Tapped to Run United Artists


LOS ANGELES (AP) - Tom Cruise will be running a Hollywood studio.

He and his producing partner, Paula Wagner, have been put in charge of United Artists. That's the studio that was formed decades ago by Hollywood actors including Charlie Chaplin and Mary Pickford.

It's a major comeback for Cruises and Wagner -- who were dumped in August from their 14-year producing deal at Parmount. The head of Paramount's parent company, Viacom, said Cruise's public antics had hurt the box office receipts for "Mission Impossible Three."

United Artists is owned by M-G-M -- which says Wagner will serve as chief executive. Cruise will appear in U-A films, but will also be allowed to star in films from rival studios.

It says both Cruise and Wagner have taken an ownership interest in U-A, but there's no word on financial terms.

They'll have full control over the studio's production slate, which is expected to include four films a year.