Cruise makes his mark in London

Dedication to his fans has star busy at preem of pic

LONDON — At the U.K. premiere of “The Last Samurai,” Tom Cruise kept his pledge to sign autographs for any fan who wanted it by signing for a whopping 2¼ hours outside London’s Odeon Leicester Square Tuesday night.

Cruise cruised past his own red carpet record set in 2002, when he signed solidly in Leicester Square for 90 minutes to promote “Minority Report.”

Cruise arrived at 6 p.m., armed with a black marker, then signed autographs, spoke on fans’ mobiles to friends and relatives and snuggled up for group pics snapped by his grinning security guards. Girlfriend Penelope Cruz, dressed in a low-cut Valentino gown, dashed inside after 15 minutes in the cold.

Helmer Edward Zwick joined Cruise and pic star Hiroyuki Sanada onstage to introduce the movie. The audience, which included Rolling Stone Bill Wyman and pop outfit Blazin Squad, was entertained by traditional Japanese drummers to allay the boredom of waiting for Cruise to come inside.

— Archie Thomas

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