Though many were shocked by the abrupt news that Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman were breaking up, no one was apparently more surprised than the couple's friends and family — and even Kidman herself.
A friend tells the Feb. 19 issue of People that the Australian actress was "broadsided" by the public split, which was announced by the celeb pair's rep on Feb. 5. "Nicole was surprised by the timing of the announcement more than the idea of the separation," the anonymous pal notes. "It came much sooner than expected."
Cruise, 38, and Kidman, 33, had just renewed their marriage vows on Christmas Eve, which was their 10-year anniversary, US Weekly reveals in an upcoming issue. Cruise filed for divorce in Los Angeles court Wednesday, citing irreconcilable differences.
But why so suddenly? Many pundits speculate that it comes down to one of three relationship wedges: religion (Cruise and Kidman are Scientologists, though People notes that she is allegedly hesitant to turn her back on her Catholic upbringing), geography, or an unnamed third party.
"Scientology had nothing to do with this," the couple's publicist, Pat Kingsley, asserted to People. "They are not being controlled [by the Church of Scientology]. They are not being counseled."
A Sudden Change of Heart?
Others claim that Kidman wanted to return to her native Sydney, Australia, where her family still lives, but Cruise did not. According to another source, "… Nicole wants to spend more time in Australia and Tom wants to spend more time [in the United States]."
The third party bit seems like a bit of a stretch: Kidman's reported ties to George Clooney were laughed off by his rep, while the murmurs that her former beau, Aussie actor Marcus Graham, was the cause of the split were immediately shot down. "Marcus is shocked and saddened by the news," the actor's rep tells US Weekly.
The couple's choice to renew their wedding vows Dec. 24 makes some wags think there was an abrupt change of heart rather than a slow burnout. "Something big must have happened," a pal tells US Weekly in the mag's Feb. 19 issue. "You don't go through all of that and then eight weeks later decide to split."
Cruise and Kidman apparently chose to announce their split this week in order to beat a breaking story The National Enquirer was set to run. The tab's editor-in-chief, Steve Coz, hinted cryptically to British Web site Empire that the article claims there's "more than one reason" — whatever that means — for the dissolution of one of Hollywood's most famous marriages.
Cruise and Kidman have two adopted children, Connor, 6, and Isabella, 8.