December 7th, 2011
02:00 PM ET
The Mumbai premiere of “Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol” was said to be packed full of ecstatic Tom Cruise supporters cheering wildly for the movie star, as reportedly was the airport when Cruise arrived in India Saturday.
But according to the Hollywood Reporter, Indian papers are reporting that those fans were actually paid extras. And Tom’s camp is fighting back.
The First Post Bollywood reports that approximately 200 extras were paid to cheer for Tom, 49, when he arrived in Mumbai. The paper says the “fans” were given 150 rupees a piece (or about $3), plus lunch.
"We were told to come here by 1 p.m. today and wait for a foreign VIP to come out of the airport gate and scream and shout when he came," an extra told the paper. "None of us know who Tom is."
Paramount Pictures, the studio distributing “Ghost Protocol,” is fighting the faux fan accusations. "Tom Cruise is a massive star and attracts huge throngs of fans as he travels the world promoting 'Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol,'" a Paramount spokesperson said in a statement to The Huffington Post. "The only people paid were performers who danced outside the venue. The idea that fans were paid to cheer is completely ludicrous and entirely false."
The Indian public's love for Tom may have been called into question, but Tom's eager to work in the country's film industry. At the Mumbai "Ghost Protocol" premiere, the actor hinted that he’d like to do a Bollywood film. “I would never say no,” Cruise enthused of the prospect. “I would love to do it."
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