In 1983, Tom Cruise starred in Risky Business, a comedy that would propel his career to superstardom. Cruise played Joel, a troubled high school student who gets into a complicated relationship with Rebecca De Mornay’s Lana, a prostitute who helps him show the world on the wrong side of the tracks. The most iconic scene in the popular film was Cruise’s Joel jamming to Bob Seger’s “Old Time Rock and Roll” in his underwear and shirt. It was the actor’s idea to slide into the frame on the hardwood floor. “I just did it at will,” the Top Gun star said while appearing on talk show The Project in 2017. “I dusted the floor and then made it sticky [tape] on the other side, so I would get the midframe on it and wear the socks,” he added.
Part of what made “Risky Business” such a success was the on-screen chemistry between the two leads. Not only did it help jumpstart Cruise’s career, but it was De Mornay’s first big break. “I had only auditioned for six months – which is nothing – when I got the female lead in a feature film that went on to be a smash hit,” she told the Los Angeles Times in 1993.
Years later, Cruise famously married Nicole Kidman and Katie Holmes, but prior to those marriages, he made headlines for dating his “Risky Business” co-star, who was romantically linked to another Hollywood actor during filming.
Rebecca De Mornay initially rejected Tom Cruise
Tom Cruise and Rebecca De Mornay’s on-screen romance would morph into a real-life date, but it wasn’t an instant connection. Risky Business co-star Curtis Armstrong spilled the tea on the two leads. “It’s no secret that Tom had an intense affair with De Mornay during filming,” Armstrong wrote of The Hollywood Reporter in his 2017 memoir, Revenge of the Nerd. Although the ‘Cocktail’ actor has expressed an interest in De Mornay, the attraction wasn’t mutual at first. This led to Cruise hanging out with other women during filming. “With Rebecca being unavailable, he began to carve out a wide swath of local talent,” revealed Armstrong.
At the time, De Mornay was dating actor Harry Dean Stanton, which was a big hurdle for Cruise. “It must have been a bit annoying to set your heart on fucking your co-star and only… her significant other shows up,” Armstrong wrote in his memoir.
Aside from dating another man, the ‘The Hand That Rocks the Cradle’ star wasn’t smitten with Cruise. “I have to say I thought he was very annoying when we started,” De Mornay told Celebrity Page in 2018. Finally, she decided to give the “Rain Man” actor a chance. “But he grew on me because after that movie we dated for two and a half years,” she added. After that relationship ended, Cruise moved on with a famous singer.
Tom Cruise moved on to other high-profile relationships
Rebecca De Mornay’s romance with Tom Cruise had a profound impact on her relationship with ex-boyfriend Harry Dean Stanton. While the two broke up when she started dating Cruise, it eventually led to a lifelong bond. “Harry Dean and I are best friends, and Tom and I don’t talk,” the “Backdraft” actor told Vanity Fair in 2017. Her “Risky Business” co-star led to a reunion with Stanton. “He happened to become my closest friend right after I broke up with Tom two and a half years later,” De Mornay said.
Cruise’s relationship with De Mornay was his first foray into high-profile romance, but it won’t be his last by a long shot. After splitting from his former co-star, Cruise dated one of the world’s most famous singers, Cher. The couple originally met at Sean Penn and Madonna’s 1985 wedding and reunited at a White House fundraiser. “We didn’t start dating until much later, but there was definitely a connection there,” the “I Found Someone” singer told the Daily Mail in 2018.
Not long after dating Cher, Cruise became engaged to—and eventually married—actress Mimi Rogers. They married in 1987 and divorced a few years later in 1990. The Edge Of Tomorrow star and Rogers reportedly had different ambitions. “He’s outgrown her,” author Wensley Clarkson, who wrote Tom Cruise Unauthorized, told Entertainment Weekly in 2001.