Jamie Foxx and Katie Holmes are finally getting the full tabloid treatment. While the actors are no strangers to headlines about their rumoured relationship, this is the first time they've made the cover of Us Weekly boasting some full-blown PDA. What was once documented in dark restaurant corners is now on grocery stands in full colour, replacing the narrative of Katie Holmes: Struggling Mother, with Katie Holmes: Head Over Heels In Love.
This is a welcome break for the actress, who's never seemed to escape the ghost of her marriage to Tom Cruise. That, itself, is its own cesspool of rumours — rumours we need to dive into if we want to fully understand the true significance of her alleged new relationship. But first, we need to rewind. Like, really rewind.
Who Is Katie Holmes?
I don't mean Katie Holmes, Tom Cruise's ex-wife, or Katie Holmes, Jamie Foxx's rumoured girlfriend. Instead, let's reintroduce ourselves to Katie Holmes the actress, who's been almost entirely buried in the past 10 years. Her first major role is perhaps still the one she's remembered for: Joey Potter in Dawson's Creek. Following the show's conclusion in 2003, Holmes landed a number of big movie roles, including the lead in First Daughter and as Rachel Dawes in Batman Begins. More recently, she played Jackie Kennedy in the TV miniseries The Kennedys: Decline and Fall (which she also produced), and made a brief cameo in Ocean's 8 as herself. Her acting career now is much like her love life: thoughtful and curated.
This approach makes sense when you reflect back on the whirlwind that was her marriage to Tom Cruise. Holmes, just a few months after splitting from fiancé Chris Klein, got engaged to Cruise and married the actor in 2006, over six months after giving birth to their daughter, Suri. In the space of about a year, Holmes turned her whole life around for her marriage, and five and a half years later (when their rumoured “contract” was up), she just as perfunctorily ended it.
Wait —what rumored contract?
This is one of the rumours that plagues both Cruise and Holmes to this day. While neither of them have addressed this rumour (reps did not immediately return Refinery29's request for comment), several outlets have reported on sources within Scientology who claim Holmes' marriage to Cruise was part of an elaborate organisational effort to find him a wife. Reports in both The Huffington Post and the New York Post allege the actor attempted to woo Penelope Cruz, Scarlett Johansson, and several other actresses he had presented in a list to the organisation. The women were reportedly "auditioned" to be his wife.
The source claimed Holmes eventually "won," signing onto a five-year-contract that guaranteed her annual payments and even a bonus if they had a child.
Johansson, however, firmly denied the reports.
"The very idea of any person auditioning to be in a relationship is so demeaning," she told The Hollywood Reporter in June 2018. "I refuse for anyone to spread the idea that I lack the integrity to choose my own relationships."
While the church itself did not respond to Refinery29's request for comment, it has denied these allegations in the past, saying any sources claiming this to be true are “disgruntled apostates,” according to Vanity Fair.
Whatever you believe, it wasn't long before Cruise burst out from behind the stage and onto Oprah's couch to declare his love for his new fiancée, which is still to this day one of the most public displays of affection we've ever seen from a celebrity.
But the euphoria had an expiration date. Five and a half years after their wedding, Cruise received a call from Holmes while on set for Oblivion announcing she was filing for divorce.
How does Jamie Foxx come into this?
Meanwhile, Foxx was building an impressive acting career with roles in blockbusters like Ray, Dreamgirls, and Django Unchained. As for romance, he's been extremely tight-lipped. He has two daughters, the mothers of whom he's never named. To allow himself to be even slightly romantically linked to Holmes is new territory for him, something that perhaps changed when rumours started bubbling after he was seen dancing with Holmes onstage at the 4th Annual Apollo in the Hamptons Benefit in 2013. According to E! News, what followed were unsourced claims that he was spending time in Holmes's apartment, but it wasn't until 2015 that the first picture of them together emerged, and the dating speculation truly got its footing.
So ARE they together?
They're certainly not Facebook official, if that's what you're asking. Neither member of the couple nor their reps have 100% confirmed the relationship, but they have 100% denied certain reports, like a recent rumour that that the pair had called off a wedding. That's why this new Us Weekly cover is so groundbreaking — in this context, at least. It shows that whatever the true details of their relationship are, they're not necessarily hiding anymore.
And what about Tom Cruise?
While Holmes is dominating Us Weekly, Cruise has taken over People. This week's cover feature is dedicated to his life as a single man in Hollywood, firmly cementing him as a successful movie star just a week before Holmes's tabloid return. Public appearances with Foxx encourage the media to steer the conversation from skeptical mystery to emphatic celebration of what could be the next iconic A-list couple. Almost six years later, Holmes is finally writing her own narrative, one without her ex-husband.