It's getting nasty: Tom Cruise says Scientology WASN'T behind split as divorce war with Katie Holmes heats up

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•Sources close to Tom say divorce was NOT over Scientology
•Divorce proceedings will reportedly stay in the state of New York for now
•Katie steps out in New York looking very thin

By Donna Mcconnell

Tom Cruise's powerhouse lawyer has taken at a swipe at Katie Holmes, accusing her and her legal team of 'playing the media.'

While Cruise, 50, has kept silent save for the statement he issued immediately after Katie made her announcement, his lawyer Bert Fields spoke to the BBC yesterday about the impending battle between the couple and their fight for custody of Suri, six.

And in a thinly veiled attack on the former Dawson's Creek actress, he said: 'We are letting ‘the other side’ (Katie and her team), play the media until they wear everyone out and then we’ll have something to say.'

Under attack: Katie Holmes has been accused by her estranged husband Tom Cruise's lawyer of 'playing the media' in order to win public sympathy

He added: 'Tactically we can’t say where Tom will file a divorce case and if he’ll be seeking joint custody of Suri.'

It was certainly an unprecedented broadside intended to draw sympathy away from the actor's estranged wife, and all the more notable as Tom, who celebrated turning 50 this week is notoriously private.

Fields, who spoke to BBC Radio 1's Newsbeat, would not be drawn on specific details of the divorce - but did use his opportunity to express that his client was 'really sad about what's happening'.

He added: 'It’s not Tom’s style to do this publicly. He is really sad about what’s happening.'

It is believed Katie wants legal custody because she is worried about Tom's devotion to sci-fi cult Scientology and the effect the quasi-religious sect may have on their six-year-old daughter.

However a source told TMZ: '[Katie] was totally committed to Scientology. She had enthusiasm for it and would voluntarily and gladly participate in it when Tom was off shooting movies.

'This is not a fight over religion. It's being used as a way to hurt Tom.'
The now warring spouses are not speaking, but Tom is reportedly calling Suri 'several times a day'.

Tom has borne the brunt of the negative publicity surrounding the divorce, and it seems his lawyer is keen to redress the balance.

But yet more revelations emerged today claiming Tom controlled Katie 'like a puppetmaster making every major and minor decision in her personal and professional life', wrote TMZ.

Tea time: Katie and Suri also had a meal at Alice's tea cup during their girly day out together

And sources close to the actress claimed: 'In the end, she felt like she couldn't breathe without his permission.'

In 2005, early in the couple's relationship during filming of Thank You for Smoking Tom allegedly instructed producers to 'kill' any promotional photos which showed Katie and co-star Aaron Eckhart engaged in kissing or 'anything else compromising.'

He is also said to have imposed his will during her stint on Batman Begins to prevent Katie from flying with the rest of the cast. Instead, Katie was made to travel to set on Tom's private jet.

A source told TMZ actor Morgan Freeman was supposedly 'disgusted' by the situation.

Field's attack came as Katie stepped out looking worryingly thin with a tired looking Suri.

Katie carried her daughter during a trip with friends - accompanied by security - to the Children's Museum of the Arts in the Soho area of New York City.

And a long-limbed Suri, dressed in a pink dress and holding onto a cuddly toy, clung on to her actress mother.

Yesterday, Katie - who filed for divorce from the Hollywood star last week - spent American holiday Independence Day as a single mother for the first time.

The Dawson's Creek beauty was seen at Wholefoods supermarket near her Chelsea apartment stocking up on food supplies.

It emerged yesterday that Katie had been secretly planning her divorce assault for several weeks with the help of her father Martin Holmes.

Solo outing: Katie and Suri enjoyed another day out this time with some playmates in New York

Exhausted: Suri Cruise looks tired by the news her parents are set for a custody battle following their divorce

The secretive plan included switching all her cell phones and email addresses.

Katie was said to be contact with Tom, right up until last week, playing the role of doting wife.

'She was talking to Tom on the phone up until last week saying, "I love you,"' a source told People magazine.

But the escape plan was well underway when the actress recently visited China for work commitments.

'Her inner circle has been planning this and switching out cell phones since she was in China [in mid-June],' the source said.

'When new cell phones arrived, then nobody could reach her. Her old best friends from last week don't have her new number, no e-mail. She's unreachable.'

Katie even allegedly bent the truth to Tom about her new Chelsea apartment.

Protected: Katie was flanked by a burly security guard

'[Tom] knew that she moved there, but [he thought it was] for different reasons,' the source told People.

'She said she moved there to drive into the underground garage. There are fewer paparazzi and it's less intrusive for her,' the source continued.

'It was the first phase of getting everything out of the house, and that's why she was able to say she's moving without giving an indication that she was going to divorce him.'

Katie's father also fired some of his daughter's assistants and hired new ones in place to help out with the grand plan.

In their new apartment building, neighbours say mother and daughter are a joy to have.

Moving on: Katie Holmes was seen at Wholefoods supermarket near her Chelsea apartment yesterday, stocking up on supplies

'Katie and Suri have been very friendly to everyone they see in the building,' a source told Radaronline. 'But they mostly keep to themselves.'

However the pair have been spotted using the communal children's playroom.

'Suri was there playing. Katie was with her and they were very sweet to the other people in the room.

'There were a few other kids there and Suri quietly played with them. She seemed like a nice little girl and the other kids looked like they were having fun with her.'

Tom, who has kept busy by shooting his latest movie Oblivion in Iceland, returned to Los Angeles earlier this week where he marked his 50th birthday with a quiet lunch alongside adopted children Connor and Isabella but not Suri.

He is said to have made it his 'first priority' to get temporary visitation rights to his daughter Suri.

The 50-year-old actor - who was 'blindsided' when his wife filed for divorce from him last week after five years of marriage and sought legal custody of their child - intends to go to court in Los Angeles in person to ensure he is legally allowed to see the youngster.

Katie filed for the divorce in New York because she believes she has a better chance of winning sole custody, and although Tom was encouraged to file in California, the law states divorce cannot be filed in separate states at the same time.

A source said: 'Tom has told Dennis Wasser and Bert Fields, his long-time entertainment lawyer, that his first priority is getting a court order in place, obviously a temporary one, that will allow him to legally see his daughter.

'Team Cruise has extensive documentation to prove that Los Angeles is where the case should proceed, because this is where he says they have lived.

'Tom is extremely disappointed that Katie filed in New York, and he feels that she is trying to cut him out of their daughter's life.

'Tom won't tolerate it and told his lawyers that if he personally needs to go to court and make a plea in front of the judge for an order allowing him to see his daughter, he will.'

The way they were: Katie announced that she was splitting with her husband of six years last Friday