Viacom's Paramount Pictures has cut loose Tom Cruise, saying his erratic behavior and religious proselytising made their mission impossible, the
Wall Street Journal
"As much as we like him personally, we thought it was wrong to renew his deal," Viacom chief Sumner Redstone told the Wall Street Journal.
"His recent conduct has not been acceptable to Paramount," Redstone said.
Cruise, 44, kept his production company, Cruise/Wagner Productions, on the Paramount lot for 14 years.
Cruise has been known for increasingly eccentric behaviour, such as jumping on Oprah Winfrey's studio couch as he declared his love for actress Katie Holmes, 17 years his junior, who recently bore the couple a child.
He also promotes the Church of Scientology and publicly criticised Brooke Shields, and all anti-depressant users, spawning some unflattering parodies.
Paramount said such stunts hurt attendance at his most recent film, Mission: Impossible III.
Cruise starred in Paramount hits Mission: Impossible, Top Gun and Days of Thunder.
Representatives of the actor disagreed that Cruise's behaviour had hurt box office sales, and pointed out to the Journal that he had made a lot of money for Paramount.
Paula Wagner, Cruise's business partner, said they had plans to set up an independent business, using money from two top hedge funds.