The pair jumped in a helicopter and choppered to the sea

Simon Pegg was filming Mission Impossible on a mountain in South Africa with Tom Cruise when the Top Gun hero decided he wanted to swim with sharks… so the pair jumped in a helicopter and choppered to the sea

Simon Pegg has today revealed how he teases his Mission Impossible co-star Tom Cruise about his ‘ridiculous’ superstar lifestyle.

The comedian, 53, who struck up an unlikely franchise with Cruise when he was cast in the 2006 film Mission: Impossible III said that even the Hollywood star realised some of his antics bordered on the outlandish.

Pegg told Radio 4’s Desert Island Discs: ‘I always make fun of him for it – the things he can access. Like we were filming in South Africa recently. 

‘We were filming on this mountain in the morning and then he decided he wanted to go and swim with sharks. So, he flew us in a helicopter to this seaside part of South Africa and we had this bespoke trip out and dived with sharks and stuff like that.’

He added: ‘At the end of the day, we were driving back and going that was a real Tom Cruise kind of a day, wasn’t it? It was just a bit of a Tom Cruise day. He appreciates the ridiculousness of it sometimes.’

Simon Pegg has revealed he pokes fun at Tom Cruise about his ‘ridiculous’ superstar lifestyle

The British comedian said he made a point of not asking Cruise, a scientologist, about his private life or personal beliefs.

He said: ‘No I don’t ask him about stuff like that because I feel that would be me abusing my privileged access that I get to him. My relationship with him is very very simple and amiable. We are friends.’

Pegg said he personally could not cope with the kind of worldwide adulation heaped on Cruise.

He said: ‘He loves it…It energises him, and it spurs him on. I don’t think I would appreciate that particularly. I would find that very stressful and overwhelming and it would make me want to sort of retreat.’

Pegg also spoke candidly about his successful battle with the depression and alcohol abuse which took root on the set of his first Mission Impossible film.

The comedian and Hollywood star first became friends when cast together in 2006 blockbuster Mission: Impossible III

He said: ‘The thing is that you become very sneaky when you have something like that in your life. You learn how to do it without anyone noticing because it takes over and it wants to sustain itself and it will do everything it can not to be stopped. But eventually it just got to a point when it can’t be hidden and that’s when thankfully I was able to pull out of the dive.’

The actor also paid tribute to the teacher who helped him turn his life around by refusing him the starring role in Hamlet.

He said: ‘I had become a bit of a Goth and I’d discovered various things you discover at the age of 16 and my teacher at the time Gordon Vallins who was the head of the course said you are not going to play Hamlet you are going to play the ghost of Hamlet.’

He added: ‘Gordon was and is a beautiful man. He was so caring, and he did the right thing. He noticed that I was just drifting away into potentially not getting into University, so he put me back on track and it worked.’

Desert Island Discs is on BBC Radio 4 today at 11.15 am and will be repeated on Friday at 9.00 am.

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