Dear Tom: Stop Confusing Your 'Deployment' With the Real Deal

Editor's note: Tom Cruise was widely reported as having equated his time on a movie set away from his child with the hardships of being deployed to Afghanistan. However, since those quotes were released Nov. 8 further investigation by reporters such as this one show that what he said may have been taken way out of context. "Tom is a staunch supporter of our troops and does not feel that making a movie is even remotely comparable to fighting in Afghanistan and said so in plain English," Cruise's lawyer said in a statement.

Clearly, there's no "Method" to Tom Cruise's madness. I know all about the concept of Method Acting, but really -- this takes the cake on the absurdity scale.

So, Tom, here are a few tips for you to clue you in on how far off the reality mark you are with your recently reported statement that being on a movie set is like being a soldier deployed to Afghanistan.

Why movie filming is nothing like deployment:

1. A movie set is not a war zone. The absence of the aroma of burning fecal matter should be the tip off.

2. No one is trying to kill you on a movie set. Those are fake guns, dude. And fake IEDs. And fake insurgents. You should know this when you pass them in the catering tent.

3. You can't hop a jet whenever you want from Afghanistan to go to Scientology events if you're a deployed soldier.

4. Deployed  soldiers don't get paid tens of millions of dollars to go to Afghanistan.

5. The "brutality" of your film set is luxurious compared to FOB accommodations. Did you have your own private toilet there? I thought so.

6. Did you get to shower everyday with actual hot water that lasted more that 17 seconds? I thought so.

7. You say you called Suri every day. Must be nice to have consistently operating phone lines, no fatality comms black outs, and not be out on patrol for days on end preventing you from any kind of communication with anyone except your fellow squad members and the random stray goat.

8. I know you said you would have come home for Suri's first day of school if "she had asked." Well, deployed Soldiers can't even come home for the birth of their kids, much less their first day of school, no matter how much a wife or child begs them to. So- how nice that you could have if she'd wanted you to. I'm actually starting to see why she wouldn't....

9. Did anyone on your movie set go there and come back in a flag-draped coffin, or come back missing a limb or suffering the effects of TBI? Yeah --  didn't think so.

10. There's nothing you have done, could do or will ever do that's as honorable, selfless, or noble as what a deployed servicemember does for this nation. Period. End of story.

So, I hope you can see the vast and marked differences between your job and my husband's. I know you've played a servicemember before, but I think you're misunderstanding the whole Method Acting thing.

Just because you play a warfighter doesn't make you a warfighter. That may be hard for you to remember, but there are plenty of us spouses out here to remind you of that fact.

Sorry, Maverick -- we've lost that lovin' feeling. For good this time.


“Ansley” is an Army spouse and resides in Alexandria, Virginia






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