22 December 2012 10:19 AM, PST | Hitfix | See recent Hitfix news »

Over Tom Cruise's long career he's earned a reputation of a summer blockbuster leading man, but most studio execs will tell you the truth is a December release date is his most reliable opening frame. "Rain Man," "Born on the Fourth of July," "A Few Good Men," "Jerry Maguire," "Vanilla Sky," "The Last Samurai," "Valkyrie" and last year's "Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol" are all Cruise hits that either opened right before or during the lucrative holiday season. In fact, Cruise's only box office disappointment among December releases is Paul Thomas Anderson's "Magnolia" which opened in limited release and expanded (badly) in »


- Gregory Ellwood

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