Trade Round-Up: Cruise Taps Himself

· After careful deliberation, Tom Cruise decides to insert himself into the WWII-set thriller (from The Usual Suspects team of director Bryan Singer and writer Christopher McQuarrie) he acquired for shiny new toy United Artists last week, taking a role in the ensemble piece as a character who struggles to diffuse his blinding star power for the sake of his fellow castmates. [Variety]
· Blockbuster's CEO is stepping down by the end of the year over a dispute about his bonus. Scintillating! [THR]
· New Line wins the rights to make an inevitably terrible movie from the Xbox game Gears of War; CAA ran the auction, which seems to have been free of messengers wearing elaborate costumes, perhaps in hopes of not repeating the Halo debacle. [Variety]
· Today in bad ideas for potential hero franchises: Columbia options the rights to The Green Hornet in an attempt to prove that the kids will go wild for characters originally appearing in 1930s radio plays. [THR]
· Clear four or so hours (not including that all-important red carpet time) off your calendar on Sunday, February 24th of next year, as the Academy has chosen that now hallowed date for next year's 80th Anniversary Oscars telecast. [Variety]