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Friday, October 2, 1998 Published at 03:33 GMT 04:33 UK


Cruise one of a Few Good Men

Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman at a recent film premiere

Tom Cruise has come to the aid of a damsel in distress and chased off muggers.

The Hollywood star had his eyes wide open when he came to the aid of his neighbour Rita Simmonds as she was attacked in the street of their London suburb.

BBC News 24 reports from the scene of the crime
The 36-year-old actor, whose real name is Thomas Mapother IV, ran to the aid of the 47-year-old woman when he heard her cry out as two men ripped a watch and rings from her hands.

Police said that in a prolonged attack the muggers wrenched open the door of the woman's Porsche car as she parked in Cumberland Terrace near Regent's Park where Cruise and wife Nicole Kidman rent a house.

A police spokesman said: "Two members of the public came to the assistance of the victim when they heard her shouting. One stayed with her while the second attempted to run after the suspects.

"Unfortunately he did not catch them."

[ image: Cruise sprang into action with his bodyguard at his side - but they got away]
Cruise sprang into action with his bodyguard at his side - but they got away
The victim told London's Evening Standard newspaper that Cruise, star of Jerry Maguire and Mission: Impossible was "brilliant".

She said: "As soon as he heard the commotion he rushed out. He ran down the road with his bouncers and chased them away."

The attackers made off with jewellery worth 87,000 including a ring and a 1920s platinum and diamond Cartier watch worth around 15,000.

They got away in a Red Ford Orion car and are described as in their early 20s, one white and one black, possibly mixed race.

[ image: Cruise: Probably not hoping for a sequel in his latest starring role]
Cruise: Probably not hoping for a sequel in his latest starring role
Cruise and Nicole Kidman have been living in London since he began filming at Pinewood Studios in Buckinghamshire for Mission: Impossible in 1996.

They have also recently finished shooting for Stanley Kubrick's Eyes Wide Shut, which is provisionally due out in 1999.

Ms Kidman has just made a daring debut in a West End play.

Starring in sell-out The Blue Room, at London's Donmar Warehouse Theatre, she has received rave reviews for a piece in which she acts five roles and 10 seduction scenes - and all for the standard actors rate of 250 per week.

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