Tom Cruise and Bauer Media are still tangled up in the getting-to-know-each-other phase.
In court documents filed today regarding Cruise's $50 million defamation suit against the Life & Style and In Touch Weekly publisher, both sides provided a laundry list of information they want from each other.
For instance, Cruise's camp is requesting a list of the stories Bauer's publications have ever run on him, and Bauer wants a complete rundown of Cruise's schedule and the time he has spent with daughter Suri since he and Katie Holmes split up.
Yes, this could take a while.
Cruise sued Bauer in October over stories claiming that he had "abandoned" Suri in the course of his divorce from Holmes. In a response filed in December, Bauer defended its reporting as "substantially true."
Per today's filing, Bauer wants an accounting of Suri's mental and emotional state following her parents' separation and divorce; the actor's work, travel and social schedule during the relevant time period; the extent to which Cruise was in contact, including his means of communication, with his daughter since he and Holmes separated; his history of separations from Suri since her birth; evidence of the role Scientology may have played regarding his visitation and communication with Suri; and Cruise's litigation history.
Meaning, Bauer wants a record of lawsuits filed by Team Cruise over the years.
As for the Jack Reacher star, his legal team is seeking a rundown of Bauer's policies and practices with regard to publishing stories about Cruise, Suri and Scientology; the minutiae surrounding how the articles in question about Cruise came to be published, including the writing, fact-checking, verification and cover-approval processes; and the identities of those responsible for everything concerning the articles' publication, from the reporting to the writing of headlines and photo captions.
Cruise's filing also requests that Bauer reveal the identity of their sources and their means of communication with said sources, as well as detail the efforts made to verify the information provided by the sources.
They additionally want more info about Bauer's policies and practices with respect to obtaining information from sources, paying for sources, verifying the credibility of course, and quoting sources with whom the editors and writers have not spoken to.
Moreover, Cruise's attorneys are demanding, apparently with an eye on the publisher's treatment of Scientology, that Bauer detail its so-called history of "bigotry and hatred toward minority religious groups and their members."
A scheduling conference is scheduled for Feb. 28 to further map out additional hearings pertaining to Cruise's lawsuit and Bauer Media's response.