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Matt Lauer and Katie Holmes Discuss His Awkward Interview With Tom Cruise

NBC NewsWire / NBCU Photo Bank


Matt Lauer and Katie Holmes Discuss His Awkward Interview With Tom Cruise


Although Matt Lauer kept his mouth shut during a heated 2005 interview with Tom Cruise, the Today show host subsequently said that he had a lot on his mind at the time.

Matt Lauer is still pondering on his now-famous interview with Tom Cruise a decade later, explaining exactly what was going through his head during the now-famous discussion.

“I was thinking, ‘Can I take him in a wrestling match? Could I tackle him on the set?’” Lauer, 58, told Cohen of his internal dialogue after Cruise, 53, got testy.

Cruise spoke with Lauer and gushed about how happy and pleased he was, having recently been engaged to Katie Holmes, who was sitting nearby in the Today studio, while promoting War Of The Worlds.

When Matt brought up Tom’s much-publicized attack on Brooke Shields and her usage of anti-depressants while suffering from postpartum depression, things got uncomfortable.

Antidepressants and other pharmaceutical medicines were debated by the two. Cruise, who is a Scientologist, is adamantly opposed to such treatment and even confronted Lauer, stating, “You don’t know the history of psychiatry. I do.”


‘Psychiatry is a pseudo science,’ a suddenly angered Cruise admonished.

The actor urged the anchor to’be a little bit more responsible’ and do study before ‘advocating’ medicines before calling him ‘glib.’

‘Just kind of filled with words, just saying anything that comes to your mind and not really thinking about it,’ Lauer explained the definition to Cohen on Wednesday’s show.

Katie Holmes, the actor’s ex-wife, is now starring as a bipolar poet in the new film Touched With Fire, and the Today show presenter couldn’t resist asking her about the heated argument.

Lauer inquired about her feelings about taking on such a dramatic part. “This was a huge challenge and one that I felt pressured to create an authentic character,” Holmes said, “because so many people do suffer and I wanted to bring a realistic portrayal to the role.”

“But you can’t just read about something like that,” Lauer told Holmes, who divorced Cruise in the summer of 2012. “Have you had people close to you—family, friends—who’ve had this condition?”

“You know, I have not had many experiences, no, with knowing people with this, but when I met with Paul, our director, he told me that this was his story and shed more light on what he’s gone through and why we were making this movie and how important it is to him,” Holmes said of doing her research for the role. “This movie, the cast, the crew—everybody was so inspired by him that there was just this energy on set to create something very authentic and very real.”

Lauer said the movie asks viewers an important question: “Is it beneficial to treat these people with drugs?” He then referred to his now infamous interview with Cruise, reminding Holmes, “You and I both remember a heated discussion I got into on that subject here in this studio. How do you think the movie comes down on that? Where do you think it leads the viewer?”

Holmes steered clear of the potentially awkward situation — and the question.

“What I think our director [Paul Dalio] did a wonderful job with is this movie just kind of shows, this is it,” she said. “These are these two characters in a love story, which he’s saying is kind of its own kind of mania, to fall in love. But he puts the question out there for the audience to make their own decision.”

Lauer had stated in subsequent interviews that he and Tom reconciled after the incident; in fact, three years later, when promoting Valkyrie, he interviewed him on Today.

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