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Actor Tom Cruise Seeking Mediation Over Defamatory Story Published in Tabloids

Thursday, March, 14, 2013


Court document filed on March 1 reveal that Actor Tom Cruise will soon be heading to mediation with the publishing company of several gossip magazines over defamatory stories they published about him that were a “vicious lie.”  Last October, Cruise filed a $50 million lawsuit against Bauer Publishing, the entity responsible for publishing the tabloid magazines In Touch and Life & Style.  However, the case has been moved to private mediation in an attempt to settle the dispute out of court and out of the very public eye that litigation invites. 

The story that brought about the defamation claim was about the actor abandoning his 6-year-old daughter, Suri, following the divorce from her mother, actress Katie Holmes.  Bert Fields, Cruise’s attorney, stated publically that the story was a “vicious lie,” and further elaborated by saying, "Tom is a caring father who dearly loves Suri.  She's a vital part of his life and always will be.  To say it in lurid headlines with a tearful picture of Suri is reprehensible."

Attorneys for the publishing company, however, are maintaining that the story is “substantially true,” and have demanded additional information from the 50-year-old actor about his relationship with his daughter and her emotional state following the divorce.  Cruise and his lawyers suspect that the magazine’s publishers are seeking more information about Cruise’s affiliation with the Church of Scientology and how the church played a role in determining his custody and visitation arrangements with his daughter.

It has been suggested that the German publisher has neo-Nazi links, including the distribution of Nazi-themed pornography, so Cruise’s attorneys will likely broach those accusations if the case makes it to court.  If private mediation fails, court might be the next step.  According to Cruise, private mediation is a standard procedure for attempting to resolve such disputes but if that fails, the case is scheduled to be heard by the courts in April 2014.  However, both the actor and his attorney are “skeptical” about Bauer working with them to resolve the matter through mediation