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Timeline: Tom Cruise's highs and lows

Tom Cruise arrives at the premiere of "Rock of Ages" on June 8, 2012, in Hollywood, Calif. Getty

(CBS News) Tom Cruise turned 50 on Tuesday, marking a birthday milestone just as his personal life once again is in the spotlight.

Pictures: Tom Cruise
Pictures: Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes
Pictures: Suri Cruise

The actor (born Thomas Cruise Mapother IV on July 3, 1962) has earned three Oscar nominations and taken on a number of now-famous roles over his three-decade-long movie career.

He's also made headlines with his relationships (most recently, when third wife Katie Holmes filed for divorce) and his devotion to the Church of Scientology.

In celebration of his birthday, here's a look at some of the highs and lows from Cruise's life and career:


  • After landing supporting roles in 1981's "Endless Love" and "Taps," Cruise gets his big break with a leading role in the 1983 film "Risky Business," which includes the now-famous scene of him dancing around in a dress shirt, tube socks and white underwear.
  • Three years after "Risky Business," Cruise gets another hit with "Top Gun" (1986). The film's need for speed cements the 24-year-old's place as a major star.
  • He finishes out the '80s with roles in "The Color of Money" (with Paul Newman), "Rain Man" (with Dustin Hoffman), "Cocktail" and Oliver Stone's "Born on the Fourth of July," which earns him a Golden Globe and his first Oscar nomination.
  • He also says "I do" for the first time in May 1987, when he marries actress Mimi Rogers. They divorce in February 1990. Rogers reportedly is the one who introduced Cruise to the Church of Scientology.
  • Cruise meets his second wife, actress Nicole Kidman, on the set of their 1990 film "Days of Thunder." They marry later that year, on Christmas Eve, and go on to adopt two children- daughter Isabella, born in 1992, and son Connor, born in 1995. The couple star together in "Far and Away" (1992) and Stanley Kubrick's "Eyes Wide Shut" (1999) before divorcing after 11 years of marriage in 2001.
  • 1996 is a big year for Cruise. He takes on the role of superspy Ethan Hunt in the "Mission: Impossible" franchise, and when the hit film "Jerry Maguire" is released. he  earns his second Academy Award nomination for playing the title role in "Maguire."
  • He receives his third Academy Award nod and another Golden Globe for his role in the 1999 film "Magnolia."


  • Cruise reprises the role of Ethan Hunt for "Mission: Impossible II" (2000) which, like its predecessor, becomes a box office hit. He also stars in "Vanilla Sky" (2001) "Minority Report" (2002) and "The Last Samurai" (2003). The latter earns him a Golden Globe nomination.
  • After his split from Nicole Kidman in 2001, Cruise is linked to his "Vanilla Sky" co-star Penelope Cruz. That relationship ends three years later, in 2004.
  • In April 2005, Cruise begins dating actress Katie Holmes, making their first public appearance together in Rome. A month later, the actor appears on "The Oprah Winfrey Show," declaring his love for Holmes and famously jumping up and down on Winfrey's couch. The media quickly coins the nickname "TomKat" for the PDA-friendly duo.
  • The couple welcomes a daughter, Suri, on April 18, 2006, and marry later that year, on Nov. 18, at a castle in Italy.
  • Cruise's alien-invasion flick "War of the Worlds" (2005) becomes a hit, but "Mission: Impossible III" (2006) underperforms at the box office. That is followed by "Lions for Lambs" (2007), which premieres to negative reviews and low box office numbers.
  • The actor's name is also in the news because of comments he makes against psychiatry and psychiatric drugs. In 2005, Cruise publicly criticizes actress Brooke Shields for her use of anti-depressants after the birth of her first daughter, which leads to heated debate between Cruise and Matt Lauer on the "Today" show. (Cruise apologizes to Shields in late August 2006.)
  • Cruise, almost unrecognizable in a bald cap and fat suit, gives a raucous performance as studio exec Les Grossman in "Tropic Thunder" (2008). That same year, the Internet is abuzz when a video of Cruise discussing the Church of Scientology surfaces online.
  • The actor also appears alongside Cameron Diaz in the 2010 action-comedy "Knight and Day," which performs poorly at the box office, before becoming Ethan Hunt once again for "Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol" in 2011. The film is a critical and commercial success, passing "War of the Worlds" to become Cruise's highest-grossing film worldwide.
  • He also transforms into '80s rocker Stacee Jaxx for the 2012 big-screen musical "Rock of Ages." Critics praise Cruise's performance, but the film itself receives mixed reviews and opens in third place at the box office.
  • On July 29, 2012, it is announced that Katie Holmes has filed for divorce from Tom Cruise after five years of marriage. Four days later, on July 3, Cruise turns 50 years old.
  • The actor will be seen next on the big screen as the title character in "Jack Reacher," an adaptation of Lee Child's novel "One Shot," set to be released in December 2012. He's also filming the sci-fi thriller "Oblivion" in Iceland.
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