8:10pm PT by Trilby Beresford
Tom Cruise Resurrects 'Tropic Thunder' Character With Conan at Comic-Con
Following his surprise appearance at Comic-Con to promote Top Gun: Maverick, Tom Cruise joined Conan O'Brien as a guest on Conan Thursday night, broadcast from the entertainment convention. Their conversation centered around the comedic talents of Cruise, which prompted the resurrection of one of his well-loved film characters.
In the clip, Conan recalls a time when he shot something with Cruise in London while the actor had a broken foot. "The comedy you were doing, you were playing it so well and I was telling people, 'oh my god, Tom Cruise is so great when he does comedy,' and then I remembered, wait a minute, you did it in Tropic Thunder. You killed in Tropic Thunder."
Cruise laughed and said the name of his character in the film: Les Grossman. "Look, I love comedy," continued the actor. "I used to write sketches when I was a little kid and I would do imitations to make my mother and my sisters laugh."
The late-night host then shared a look at Cruise resurrecting his Grossman from Tropic Thunder, dancing during the credit sequence. When Conan asked if Cruise took hip-hop classes to prepare to be Les Grossman, Cruise explained that he frequently takes courses to learn new skills, whether it's singing, dance, hip-hop or something else.
Recalling his early conversation with director Ben Stiller about the film, Cruise said that he told Stiller, "Look, I want to play this character, but I want fat hands, and I want to dance." Pausing to laugh with Conan, he continued, "Sometimes you just get an instinct with a character." He said that Stiller gave him a look of uncertainty.
As their conversations about the character continued, Cruise remained adamant about having fat hands. Finally, the makeup was created and Cruise started dancing in front of Stiller even though there was no music. Stiller thought it was hilarious, and Les Grossman was born.
Later in the segment, Cruise spoke aloud one of his iconic lines from the film: "Stand back and literally f— your own face."
Watch the clip below.