Case | HBS Case Collection | November 2007 (Revised March 2010)

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) and Tom Cruise

by Anita Elberse and Peter Stone


In November 2006, Harry Sloan, chairman and CEO of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc. (MGM) offers movie star Tom Cruise and his business partner Paula Wagner a chance to run United Artists (UA), a dormant studio within MGM's portfolio. Just over two months earlier, Viacom chairman Sumner Redstone publicly complained about Cruise's controversial behavior and abruptly ended Cruise and Wagner's 14-year relationship with Viacom's movie studio, Paramount Pictures. Sloan's proposal gives Cruise a chance to strike back. Can Cruise, Wagner, and Sloan, who regards the deal as an "interesting experiment" aimed at aligning the incentives of studios and creative talent, make the partnership work?

Keywords: Business Units; Talent and Talent Management; Film Entertainment; Brands and Branding; Partners and Partnerships; Value Creation; Motion Pictures and Video Industry;


Elberse, Anita, and Peter Stone. "Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) and Tom Cruise." Harvard Business School Case 508-057, November 2007. (Revised March 2010.)