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Simon Pegg: Tom Cruise Will ‘Flatly Deny’ Any Wrongdoing on Set

"When you're on set, he's the boss," Pegg said of "Mission: Impossible" co-star and executive producer Cruise.

Tom Cruise, Top Gun: Maverick premeire

Tom Cruise

Sipa USA via AP

Updated: Pegg wants to make it clear that his remarks were most definitely a joke despite trending on Twitter as something he said seriously. “Currently trending on Twitter for something I said in The Times interview about Tom Cruise never accepting responsibility for his mistakes, like it isn’t just a fucking running joke that we have. Stop being so f-king literal,” he said in a Twitter post.

Earlier: Is Tom Cruise truly the last movie star? Just ask his longtime co-star Simon Pegg.

Ahead of “Mission: Impossible: Dead Reckoning – Part One,” Pegg revealed how Cruise “maintains his authority” on set. The duo first began working together on “Mission: Impossible III” in 2006. Cruise loomed large over the “M:I 7” production amid the COVID-19 pandemic and butted heads with Paramount Pictures to demand a theatrical release for the film.

“If something goes wrong and it’s his fault, he’ll flatly deny it,” Pegg told The Times. “And then if someone corrects him, instead of saying sorry, he’ll just say, ‘Yeah,’ and wink at me.”

Pegg added, “I admitted f—ing up once, and he said — with a wry smile, I hasten to add — ‘Simon, don’t do that.’ He maintains his authority by never being to blame for anything.”

The “Hot Fuzz” actor shared that Cruise “liked me because I make him laugh” and also jokingly calls him out on occasion.

“I’ll pull him up on stuff and I can be frank with him,” Pegg said. “But he’s still Tom Cruise. When you’re on set, he’s the boss.”

As for Cruise’s international superstar status and very public persona, Pegg can empathize with the constant spotlight: “I’d be so stressed out,” he explained, “but he’s very okay with it. He understands that’s the price for the level of movie star he is. He’s perhaps the only movie star left.”

Cruise’s ties with Scientology have also been the subject of much debate.

“People have these opinions about him, which are based entirely on gossip, and he doesn’t really do anything to combat that,” Pegg added. “When I hear people speculating about his weird religion and making assumptions about who he is as a person, I say, ‘You know he risks his life for his audience?'”

Former Scientology member and “Scientology and the Aftermath” documentarian Leah Remini criticized Cruise amid his “Top Gun: Maverick” premiere and retweeted a post from self-identified “cult survivor” Claire Headley, who also escaped the Church of Scientology. Headley listed “scam of a man” Cruise’s “crimes against humanity” including allegedly supporting abuse in the Church.

Remini captioned, “Thank you to my friend @claireheadley for your courage. You have continued to speak out despite the non-stop attacks from Scientology. And as Claire says in her post below, Tom Cruise knows exactly what goes on in Scientology. Don’t let the movie star charm fool you.”

The next “Mission: Impossible” film will premiere July 14, 2023.

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