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Published: Tuesday, 1/20/2009

Cruise 'wanted to kill Hitler'

FROM THE BLADE'S NEWS SERVICES
Tom Cruise greets fans in
South Korea, where he traveled
to promote his new
movie,  Valkyrie. Tom Cruise greets fans in South Korea, where he traveled to promote his new movie, Valkyrie.
Enlarge

Tom Cruise says playing an anti-Hitler plotter in his latest movie Valkyrie fulfilled a childhood fantasy.

In real life, the American actor says he harbors feelings similar to his German character, who led a failed plot to assassinate the Nazi leader.

"I've always wanted to kill Hitler. As a child, I used to wonder why someone didn't stand up and kill him," Cruise told reporters in Seoul on Sunday.

Studying his character, would-be Hitler assassin Col. Claus von Stauffenberg, Cruise said he "came to greatly admire him."

"Although the story takes place during the World War II, I found the story ageless," he said. Making the movie "was a powerful experience that I will never forget."

Despite early skepticism toward Valkyrie, the movie had a solid $21.5 million opening weekend in North America in December and has made a total $77.6 domestically since then, according to the box office tracking Web site Box Office Mojo.

Cruise's visit to Seoul, where Valkyrie opens Thursday, marks a rare promotional stop by Hollywood to South Korea, which traditionally focuses on neighboring Japan as the industry's main Asian market.

U2 fans, get your boots on. The first song from the band's first album in five years is ready for you to hear.

U2 began broadcasting the up-tempo single "Get On Your Boots" yesterday - first on RTE, Ireland's state broadcasters, then for free on the group's Web site.

It's the Dublin-bred band's long-standing practice to give hometown fans the first listen of each album. Giving an advance taste on the Internet to the rest of the world is new.

U2's official Web site lists all 11 title tracks for the new album, "No Line on the Horizon," which will be released Feb. 27 in Ireland and March 3 worldwide. It is the band's 12th studio album and the first since 2004's Grammy-winning "How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb."

British actress Kate Winslet says she spends so much time talking about Leonardo DiCaprio she's starting to confuse him with her real husband, Sam Mendes.

Winslet is in the U.K. promoting the movie Revolutionary Road, which Mendes directed. The film reunites her with her Titanic co-star and longtime friend DiCaprio.

The duo's reunion more than a decade after the melodramatic blockbuster was hotly anticipated, and both have been peppered with questions over whether their on-screen chemistry is still as strong.

Winslet told Britain's GMTV yesterday that DiCaprio "feels more like my husband than my real husband, I have to say. I'm talking about him so much!"

The producers of the Broadway play Speed the Plow filed a grievance with Actors' Equity against actor Jeremy Piven, who left the Broadway show in the middle of its run, citing health concerns because of mercury poisoning, the New York Times reported Saturday.

Jeffrey Richards, one of the lead producers of the David Mamet play, said in a statement that a grievance had been filed with the union over Piven's departure last month and that a date for proceedings by the union was still to be determined.

Citing a person who had been briefed on the producers' concerns, the Times reported they wanted an independent evaluation by Equity of the medical evidence and of Piven's alleged history of trying to leave the show early.

Piven's spokesman Samantha Mast called the claims "absurd and outrageous," the Times said, adding that Piven quit the show because of "medical necessity on the advice of his doctors, after he was hospitalized."

The Emmy-award winning star of HBO's Entourage, who has been the target of jokes by television hosts and comedians since leaving Speed the Plow, has said that the mercury in his system was six times the normal limit.



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