Cruise Drafted for Singer Thriller

When Bryan Singer and Christopher McQuarrie brought their new thriller to United Artists, they got more than a producer. They got a star.

UA co-head Tom Cruise, who snagged the rights to the "Usual Suspects" reunion, will also star in the currently untitled World War II drama. This will be the second straight United Artists pick-up that Cruise has also opted to star in, after taking a supporting turn in Robert Redford's "Lions for Lambs."

Details on the project were initially vague, but somebody fed the industry trades the information that McQuarrie's script is based the real events surrounding a group of German generals plotting to assassinate Adolph Hitler. While the trades say that Cruise agreed on Tuesday to take a lead role, no role is specified, though the "Born on the Fourth of July" star probably won't be playing Hitler.

Singer hopes to slot in the relatively inexpensive ensemble thriller before Warner Brothers' "Superman Returns" sequel begins to occupy all of his time.

"Lions for Lambs," the first United Artists film since Cruise and Paula Wagner were given creative control of the company, will open on Nov. 9. Cruise was last seen on the big screen in "Mission: Impossible III."