Tom Cruise was seen for the first time today after news broke that his wife Katie Holmes had filed for divorce, putting an end to their picture-perfect, five-year marriage,
Hiding his eyes behind aviator shades, the Hollywood veteran, 49, glowered as he took a helicopter ride from the set of his latest film Oblivion in Iceland.
The actor was seen in the passenger seat of a private helicopter flying out of Reykjavik airport.
It is unknown if Tom was being taken back to the production of the sci-fi movie or returning to New York in a bid to call off the divorce which his 33-year-old wife demanded this week.
Meanwhile, Katie has reportedly been planning the bombshell for weeks, with Radar reporting she ‘secretly rented a Manhattan apartment to move into with Suri once the papers dropped’.
The couple sensationally revealed they are divorcing on Friday, despite depicting the image of the perfect Hollywood family.
Cruise, 49, said he was ‘deeply saddened’ that his younger wife, 33, had filed for a separation.
He revealed the former Dawson’s Creek actress had initiated the split, bringing a dramatic end to one of Tinseltown’s most high-profile romances.
In a surprise move, Miss Holmes is understood to have filed for sole custody of the couple’s daughter Suri, six.
‘This is a personal and private matter for Katie and her family,’ Holmes’s lawyer Jonathan Wolfe said in a statement to People magazine.
‘Katie’s primary concern remains, as it always has been, her daughter’s best interest.’
A spokesperson for Cruise said: ‘Kate has filed for divorce and Tom is deeply saddened and is concentrating on his three children.’
The actress filed documents in New York this week citing ‘irreconcilable differences’.
Separate lives: Katie and her daughter Suri were spotted in New York yesterday
SURI IN THE MIDDLE
The actress is seeking sole legal custody and primary residential custody of the six-year-old, and a ‘suitable amount of child support’.
She even filed for divorce in New York – rather than California – because the East Coast state doesn’t like giving feuding parents joint power to make decisions for their children, according to TMZ.
But sources say the actor may mount a fight to bring the case to California, which favors joint legal custody.
They have suggested that Tom’s absence – he has been on a promotional tour and filming he’s new movie – was started to take a toll on his young daughter’s behaviour.
The estranged couple are raising Suri in accordance with the doctrine of the Church of Scientology – treating her as an adult, free to make her own decisions.
But there is now speculation Katie no longer wants her daughter to follow the controversial religion.
She has asked for legal custody, primary residential custody and a ‘suitable amount’ of child support from her husband, TMZ reports.
Miss Holmes is also asking for a division of property in the divorce documents, although there is a significant pre-nuptial agreement that is based on California law.
The couple are worth around $275 million – much of that owing to Tom’s box office success.
The terms of the pre-nup are understood to be clear – for each year the couple stay married, the Dawson’s Creek actress collects $3million – to a maximum of $33 million after 11 years – as well as their palatial home in California.
If their marriage had lasted more than 11 years, Holmes would have received half of Cruises’s reportedly $250 million fortune.
After filing for divorce less than six years later, according to the agreement, Katie should only be entitled to $15 million as well as the couple’s $35 million Beverly Hills Mansion
But with an estate worth upwards of $275 million, Katie is expected to seek much more and there is already intense speculation as to how much she will collect when the papers are signed.
Cruise is believed to have ‘not seen’ the divorce coming.
But sources insist that she did tell her husband of five-and-a-half years that she was filing for divorce – but she didn’t give him a chance to control the spread of the news, as he did with Nicole Kidman.
The fact that she issued a solo statement speaks of some heat around the final extinguishing of the marriage.
The pair have not been seen together in public for almost three months – they were last pictured on April 5 while in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
Miss Holmes failed to turn up to at any of the worldwide premieres of her husband’s latest film Rock of Ages, despite Cruise’s constant protestations of love for his wife.
The final arguments seem to have been over where Cruise would spend his 50th birthday on Tuesday. He told her that he was planning to be on the set of his latest film Oblivion and that seems to have been the last straw.
The statuesque brunette had frequently been pictured looking drawn and exhausted during her marriage. One Hollywood source said she had been ‘utterly miserable with Tom for months, if not years’.
Apart: Katie, seen with Suri on June 26, did not join Tom, seen here on June 8, as he promoted Rock of Ages
Indeed, the row over his birthday followed another bust-up over what Miss Holmes felt were embarrassingly bad taste pictures of him on the cover of W magazine last month.
He was dressed – or rather undressed – as the rock star Stacee Jaxx, the character he plays in Rock of Ages. Two half-dressed blondes were wrapped around him, one licking his face.
Miss Holmes, a nice girl from Ohio who is nevertheless very aware of why Cruise feels the need to play the macho card in public, was apparently ‘speechless’ with disgust and felt the pictures laid both of them open to ridicule.
Carrying the load: Katie has been left looking after Suri on her own this month – pictured here on June 14, June 19 and June 22
The marriage has been in such poor shape that for the past year they have led almost entirely separate lives.
Miss Holmes has chosen to stay with Suri in Cruise’s New York apartment while he has travelled the world working.
The little girl has been her constant and only companion. They are often out together until late, and Miss Holmes – who gave up all the threads of her old life to become Mrs Tom Cruise – seems to have no other friends at all.
A shopping and sundries budget reputed to run at $125,000-a- month (£80,000) could only keep her amused for so long.
One Hollywood source said: ‘It was an open secret that she was utterly miserable with Tom, and had been for months if not years. They really couldn’t drag out the pretence any longer.’
Another source added: ‘Katie spent her time avoiding him, and they rowed terribly.’ When Cruise was filming Rock of Ages in Miami, Miss Holmes came along with Suri and they made a family holiday of it. But since then they have spent no more than a handful of nights under the same roof.
Miss Holmes, who used to have a poster of Cruise on her bedroom wall, found that being married to an intense, workaholic, and deeply religious megastar was no picnic.
Those close to her said that she felt he wasn’t putting any effort into her or the marriage.
Her once promising film career – she had been the love interest in Batman Begins – had been stifled. Roles evaporated. She ended up trying to find work as a fashion designer, endorsing the line Holmes and Yang.
The bigger picture is that this is the end of the third of Cruise’s marriages and a spectacular failure of his strategy to relaunch himself as a ‘regular guy’.
And if the union was supposed to cease gossip about Cruise and his personal life, in particular rumours of his homosexuality – always denied – it failed utterly.
The couple’s 2006 Italian wedding was choreographed like a massive movie premiere, with more bodyguards than guests and the ultimate goal seemingly the fantastically romantic images which were released to the media of the A list star and his pretty bride.
This came in the wake of the president of Paramount Sumner Redstone complaining that women found the actor ‘creepy.’
Katie issued a solo statement announcing the couple’s divorce, hinting at some heat around the final extinguishing of the marriage.
Holmes’s attorney Jonathan Wolf said: ‘This is a personal and private matter for Katie and her family. Katie’s primary concern remains, as it always has been, her daughter’s best interest.’
Tom’s spokesperson soon responded and made it clear it was the actress who ended the relationship.
‘Kate has filed for divorce and Tom is deeply saddened and is concentrating on his three children,’ the statement read. ‘Please allow them their privacy to work this out.’
When the romance began – Katie had met Tom to discuss the possibility of appearing in Mission Impossible III – she was immediately sent on an intensive and lengthy study course about Scientology, the religion founded by sci-fi author L Ron Hubbard in 1954, which holds that humans are descended from an exiled race of aliens called Thetans.
She was ‘audited’ by Scientology counsellors, and unlike Penelope Cruz and Nicole Kidman before her, has totally embraced the movement.
Cruise proposed on June 17, 2005 on the top of the Eiffel Tower following a famously embarrassing declaration of his love on Oprah Winfrey’s show, where he jumped up on the couch yelling ‘I’m in love, I’m in love, I can’t be cool, I can’t be laid back.’
Despite earlier reports that there would be a Roman Catholic ceremony of some sort – Katie was born a Catholic – it was a Scientology wedding. What’s more it was conducted by David Miscavige, Tom Cruise’s best friend who is the head of the movement.
From the outset Miss Holmes struggled to ever settle in their Los Angeles mansion. Cass Mapother is a key figure here, Tom’s sister – and she and her three sons share the house with Tom and his two adopted children Connor, 17, and Isabella, 19. But Miss Holmes never felt that the massive mansion, stuffed with bodyguards, was her home. Everyone who came through the doors was a Scientologist.
His devotion to the religion meant that he was widely regarded as ‘weird’. Andrew Morton unauthorised biography repeated claims that Suri was thought by some to have been conceived using the frozen sperm of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard. This suggestion infuriated Cruise, friends describing it as ‘sick, offensive and very upsetting’.
You wonder, though, if he will be all the more damaged still by what has happened to Katie Holmes.
Before they met she was a natural beauty, and her physical decline in the five and a half years that followed is almost shockingly obvious.
How will Tom – the sofa jumper who wants so desperately to be loved – ever get over this?