What took you guys so long to get together
and make a movie?
SPIELBERG: I think that we always knew we were
going to work together. When I first met Tom on the
set of Risky Business, I said to him ďI
really want to direct you in a movie.Ē We were
patient because it was inevitable. It wasnít going
to happen because we forced it to happen but because
something felt right. For this project Tom and I both
felt it was right. Weíve come close a couple of
times but we really felt good about this one.
Anything to add, Tom?
CRUISE: Ditto [laughs]
SPIELBERG: Iím like a precog because I knew you
were going to say that.
Steven is quoted as calling your performance in Minority
Report a slow smolder, the way Humphrey Bogart
used to be when contemplating danger. Did you feel
CRUISE: Steven and I talked about keeping an
undercurrent with this character and for him to not
see the danger coming. This character starts out with
a tremendous amount of loss that has to be there. That
emotional thrust. Personally I love Stevenís choices
with me as an actor, the takes he wanted and how he
directed me. It was a lot of fun for me. Hereís a
guy thatís a leader of men and it needed that
Is playing a darker role more fun?
CRUISE: Yeah, Iíve never played a dark role
before. Iím joking [laughs] but itís not a good
I love this character and to have this character
with all the eye-candy and this great story is
wonderful. I also like humor in movies and Steven kept
coming to me with ideas for the movie like the
eyeballs and the rotten sandwich. It was fun for that
character to do stuff like that.
I also like the complexity of this character. As an
actor to have a role like this is great.
What are the challenges of setting a movie in the
SPIELBERG: The challenge of setting a movie in the
future is to not be futuristic. For me it was to be
levelheaded about it and to bring it to as close to
our reality as possible. The movie is set in 2054 and
if you look at 1950 to 2002, the changes are profound
in terms of information collecting and the Internet
and certainly space travel even though we havenít
gone very far. We donít know that much more than we
knew in 1950. Thereís not a lot of changes. We still
drive on four wheels. We did a big leap in this movie,
they ride on a magnetic levitation system.
CRUISE: But fossil fuels are still widely used.
SPIELBERG: There is a closet environmentalist
inside of me screaming to come out and I slipped a few
messages in the movie. I felt like I wanted to set a
future where we could all say, ďYes thatís
feasible, itís not like The Jetsons, this could
happen.Ē I was able to gather a symposium of 23
futurists from all across the nation. I started it a
few years ago in order to find out what they thought
the future might be. They were very practical and I
skimmed ideas off the top of what they had to say.
So they didnít think of any flying cars.
SPIELBERG: No flying cars but you can see them in Star
Wars: Attack of the Clones [laughs].
Even though you both found the perfect movie to
work on together is there any project that you, Tom,
would have liked to done with Steven and vice versa?
CRUISE: I could only be in one of Stevenís
movies? [laughs] If I could I would put myself in
every one of his films.
SPIELBERG: Itís called the world of digital.
CRUISE: When I saw Jaws as a kid, I wanted
to be those characters. Plus I would have loved to be
in E.T. For me Iím just so pumped.
What about you, Steven? Would you like be Joel
Goodson [the main character played by Cruise in Risky
Business] on the train with Rebecca?
SPIELBERG: That was easy to watch. I would have
liked to have directed Jerry Maguire because itís
one of my favorite Tom Cruise films. But thank
goodness it wasnít me and thank goodness it was
Cameron Crowe. He really understood that character. He
made those guys on ESPN acceptable. That was one of my
favorite films because of the pure energy in that
Could you share your thoughts on the mind of Philip
K. Dick? [Author of the original short story for Minority
and Blade Runner]
CRUISE: Itís prophetic work. Just gripping. His
ability to recognize the future, where crime rates are
going. In terms of my character, he wasnít like that
in Philip K. Dickís short story. For me hereís a
guy who trains an elite group of people and believes
in what heís doing and as the story unfolds there is
a moral dilemma. The reason that Philip K. Dickís
stories have been made into so many movies is how
prophetic his work was. In Washington right now theyíre
trying to make a computer program that will predict
human behavior by the way they move to spot terrorists
SPIELBERG: What those computers will be looking for
is anomalies in behavior. They will have a mean
average of how people behave when walking. Then they
will compare it to people whose behavior is more
The problem with that is that a nerd like me who
does have a weird walk and doesnít exactly look like
a normal person may be targeted [Tom laughs]. I
imagine white vans pulling up to me, dragging me
inside and taking me to an interrogation. So like
Minority Report, not every system is perfect.
Also, it makes me a little frightened of the powers to
be that are going to be able to observe us, but itís
all in the name of the common good.
What happens when this crisis passes and we finally
have a handle on terrorism and we feel safe on the
homefront. All these expansive powers that we are
allowing the FBI and the CIA to have to protect us,
are we going to be able to get it all back to the way
it was before 9/11.
CRUISE: I donít think so.
SPIELBERG: Thatís how weíre going to have to be
strong as a country and a people. We suspended our
privileges and our personal freedoms to be able help
all of us.
CRUISE: I want it back. But like anything it
becomes the norm. Once you get the machine going it
will be a dilemma to get it back. I donít even think
the public realizes what they will be giving up in
terms of personal freedoms.
SPIELBERG: In our movie the public gets eye scanned
and then advertisements target you and call you by
your first and last name. Thatís fine, that happens
when those pop-ups happen on our computer. Often they
know our name or e-mail address. But by the same
token, we allow that to happen because we as a social
species, we like interaction. We want to be included,
we want to watch TV but we also want TV to watch us so
we can be part of Survivor, be part of the
shows. We want to be eventized ourselves and that is
passive approval of allowing technology to look even
deeper into our lives. Iím assuming that weíre
going to protest this in a number of years but right
now weíre letting it all happen.
Tom, how would you describe the difference between
working with filmmaking icons like Stanley Kubrick
[who directed Tom in Eyes Wide Shut] and Steven
CRUISE: Both are very different directors. For me I
was looking forward to this happening with Steven. I
loved working with Stanley, that was very challenging
and a good time in my life. Stevenís been my friend
for many years and now for me to have this chance to
work with him, I will say that it was the greatest
experience Iíve ever had. Itís something Iíd
like to do again.
SPIELBERG: Hire me again [Tom laughs]. Iím for
Steven, will there be a fourth Indiana Jones?
SPIELBERG: Yes, sir. There was always going to be
another starting about 4 years ago. Frank Darabont
[director of The Shawshank Redemption and The
Majestic] is going to write it. Weíre going to
start shooting in May of 2004 and itís coming out on
July 4th holiday weekend of 2005. The only thing
that would change that is the unforeseen. But Harrison
Ford, George Lucas and I have all committed.
What about Sean Connery?
SPIELBERG: Thereís a whole bunch of spoilers I
donít want to give away right now.