It seems that DVD's might have had a bit more to do with Tom Cruise and Paramount Pictures falling out than Cruise's devout Scientology beliefs.
In a story from The Hollywood Reporter, Cruise has had a very lucrative deal with the studio which brought him "about 20% of boxoffice revenue as well as a piece of DVD sales." With the DVD market apparently slowing down, Paramount might have rethought how they did business with Cruise, especially since Mission: Impossible III didn't burn up the box office as anticipated.
"A lot of pressure has been brought to bear on these corporations, which have to grow their stock earnings in an area that is not growing by leaps and bounds," said an unidentified talent agency rep. "So what are their choices? They have to cut back."
Another unidentified top executive had this to offer, "DVD sales was a growth industry that covered a lot of sins. We've now seen the top, and we have to be more responsible about everything. When the best-case scenario won't work or you only make a 5% margin on the best-case scenario, you have to take a step back. It's not the upfront money (for the talent) but the participations that are hurting us."
According to Vogel Capital Management president Hal Vogel, "Mission: Impossible III made money for Paramount, but it made more for Cruise... In today's market, you can't have individuals walking away with the lion's share of the profit and the studio that risks the capital -- in this case $150 (million)-$200 million -- get less payment then the guy who didn't risk any capital."