You want a Les Grossman film. You may not have realized that, but it’s true. Tom Cruise knows you want a Les Grossman film. He knows that his pudgy, balding, egocentric turn in Tropic Thunder is the most popular thing he’s done in years, and so — in true modern Hollywood fashion — he’s working on a way to spin the character off into his own movie.
E! Online‘s Marc Malkin reports that, backstage after his performance at the MTV Movie Awards, Cruise said to him of a Les Grossman movie,
“We’re working on it,” he beamed. “Yup, we’re working on it.”
So…how will this not be a weird bookend to It’s Pat? or the Martin Short Glick material? (Ugh, on both counts.) I like the Grossman character. He was great in Tropic Thunder, and the recent appearances in conjunction with the MTV Movie Awards have, if nothing else, been among the highlights of that whole enterprise for 2010. I can even see Grossman appearing in other Paramount films down the line. Could be a great gag to carry forward in otherwise in related movies.
But a film that relies on Grossman? Not so easy to pull off.
Easy to see why Cruise would be interested, though. The character was his first significant move towards a career revival after the lows of his Oprah appearance and Scientology video. Judging by the response to his recent appearances in the fat suit, the character works outside the context of Tropic Thunder, at least in small doses. Sure, Cruise has got Knight & Day and Mission: Impossible IV coming up, but he’s going to need something else soon. Evidently the fat, loudmouth movie exec character looks like the hot ticket.
This has likely been on Cruise’s mind for a while — not long after Tropic Thunder premiered, the actor talked about doing more with the character. The recent MTV sketches have probably just been the beginning.