Tom Cruise enrolls at Harvard Law (for an hour)

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Tom Cruise enrolls at Harvard Law (for an hour)

Tue Oct 06, 2009 @ 03:12PM PST

By Matthew Belloni

Cruise Tom Cruise has played idealistic lawyers in "A Few Good Men," "The Firm" and "Jerry Maguire." On Monday Cruise joined a classroom of bright-eyed and budding Esquires at Harvard Law School for a lecture from his actual attorney Bert Fields. According to the HLS newspaper, Cruise tagged along with Fields, who has repped the actor for years, because he had never heard Fields teach. The A-list Power Lawyer (HLS class of '52) was a guest of entertainment law professor Bruce Hay.  Needless to say, the students were a bit distracted by the celeb intrusion.

  • "After quick, smiley glances in his direction, students resumed their normal classroom activities--they raised their hands and asked questions; they GChatted; they took notes; they browsed Net-a-Porter and Bergdorf Goodman. From time to time they would steal a sidelong look at the glowing actor.  He would sometimes lean over and share a quiet joke with the student sitting next to him, who, except for these moments, kept her eyes politely trained on her computer."

Cruise was apparently a diligent student, paying close attention to the details of the lecture. It makes sense. The actor has been involved in some of the more interesting entertainment litigation cases over the past few years, battling paparazzi and celebrity websites, especially over his involvement in the Church of Scientology.

  • "Throughout his discussion, Fields would refer questions back to Tom, and Cruise would also interject his own experiences.  He spoke about tabloid magazines and issues concerning the propriety of celebrity images, working with directors such as the late Stanley Kubrick, and the business of how the rating on movies gets set in the U.S. as opposed to in Europe." 

By the end of the lecture, Cruise had drawn a crowd. The Harvard paper concludes that he might even have a second career ahead of him: "Cruise probably gave more time to HLS students than many professors are able to after class." 

Photo: Harvard Law Record

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The Hollywood Reporter, Esq. blog focuses on how the entertainment and media industries are impacted and influenced by the law. It is edited by Matthew Belloni with contributions from veteran legal reporter Eriq Gardner and others. Before joining The Hollywood Reporter, Belloni was a lawyer at an entertainment litigation firm in Los Angeles. He writes a column for THR devoted to entertainment law. Gardner is a New York-based writer and legal journalist. Send tips or comments to [email protected]

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