On Saturday, November 18th 2006, Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise were married in what was certainly the celebrity wedding of the year, if not the decade! This lavish wedding took place in a small town in Italy, and the 150 guests included such Hollywood stars as Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith, David and Victoria Beckham and even Brooke Shields. Although celebrity weddings are usually kept hush-hush, Tom and Katie are a couple that loves the spotlight, and many details of their wedding were leaked in advance.
Details of Katie and Tom's Wedding Ceremony and Reception
Their Scientology wedding ceremony was short and sweet, lasting only 15 minutes. But the wedding kiss went on forever! Reports say that their kiss lasted nearly three minutes, and the guests were finally prompted to begin shouting "Stop! Stop!" (Gossip columnists are already comparing Tom and Katie's kiss to Liza Minelli and David Gest's. See how long that marriage lasted?!) The real fireworks were outside, where a magnificent fireworks display erupted over the castle. Inside, guests dined on four courses, including sea bass and steak, before enjoying a five-tier white chocolate wedding cake. They were serenaded by famed Italian opera superstar Andrea Bocelli, and Tom Cruise himself sang The Righteous Brothers' "You've Lost That Loving Feeling." It was a strange choice for a wedding serenade, even if it was a scene from Top Gun.
Katie Holmes’s Wedding Dress
Katie went on a Paris shopping spree in October, where she enlisted Georgio Armani to design her wedding dress, a diaphanous and delicate white lace off-the-shoulder dress.
It was beaded all-over with Swarovski crystals, and trimmed with tulle and lace. Supposedly, Tom Cruise himself helped design it! Guess he didn't think it's bad luck for the groom to see the dress before the wedding.
Armani also designed the entire wedding party’s ensemble, including Tom’s wedding tux, and the bridesmaids’ and groomsmen’s apparel.
In addition to her wedding dress, Katie’s ensemble was rumored to include some fancy La Bra lingerie; altogether her wedding night lingerie was said to cost more than $3,000.
The Castle Where Katie and Tom Got Married
Following in the footsteps of such stars as Madonna and Guy Ritchie, Katie and Tom’s wedding took place in a romantic castle. Sleepy fifteenth-century Odescalchi Castle, in the small town of Bracciano near Rome, was the site of both the ceremony and reception.
Locals complained that even though Bracciano gave the use of the castle as a wedding gift to the couple, Tom and Katie didn't even come outside to pose for a picture or say hello to locals. Normally Odescalchi Castle rents for $50,000, but Mayor Riccioni was smart enough to sell prime viewing spots to the paparazzi for $1,500 a piece.
Katie and Tom's Honeymoon
The couple slipped off at 5 am for their romantic honeymoon in the Maldives, far away in the Indian Ocean. Strangely, not only did Baby Suri join them, but also Tom's best man, senior scientologist David Miscavige.
Other Celebrity Wedding Guests
Along with Will, Jada, David, Victoria, and Brooke, Katie and Tom’s guest list included a-list stars such as Jennifer Lopez, Marc Anthony, and Jim Carrey as well as fellow scientologists John Travolta, Kirstie Alley, and Kelly Preston.
Other wedding guests: Katie’s family, including parents Martin and Kathy Holmes, Tom’s mom, his children Connor and Isabella and of course, the couple’s 6-month-old baby Suri, Jennie McCarthy, tenor Andrea Bocelli, and hundreds more. Who wasn't there: Oprah Winfrey. In an interview with Extra the talk show host said, "It's not that I'm not going. It's that they had a limited number of people that they could invite," which is a nice way to spin the fact that she was excluded from the biggest celebrity wedding of the year.
Scientology and Catholicism
Although Katie Holmes was raised Catholic, she converted to Scientology shortly after meeting Tom Cruise. Her parents have been publicly dismayed at her conversion, and many rumors have flown about the possibility of both a Catholic wedding ceremony and a Scientology wedding ceremony.
However the latest reports say that it will be exclusively a Scientology ceremony, with a few Catholic touches like the singing of Ave Maria. As Tom has been divorced twice, Italian Catholic priests have said they will not marry the couple. And even though the couple visited Rome’s city hall on November 15, insiders say the couple filed the appropriate paperwork in California, and their Scientologist wedding will be legal through that state.
Although Scientologists are generally secretive about their religion, they say that a Scientology wedding is not that different from a traditional wedding ceremony and includes vows, flower girls, bridesmaids, and exchanging rings. There’s also a focus on communication, and the couple vows not to go to sleep angry at one another. Another element of a Scientology wedding is the community’s vow to support the marriage. The couple can chose one of several versions of the ceremony, which range in length from about 20 minutes to an hour. The most traditional version refers to the bride as “girl” instead of her name, and has her promise to accept the man’s fortune “at its prime and ebb.” Meanwhile, the groom promises to provide for all of her needs, including such things as clothes, a comb, and perhaps a cat.
Was Tom a Groomzilla?
Tom Cruise is famously controlling, and he certainly took charge of this wedding. Not only did he help choose Katie's wedding dress, but he managed every detail from the menu to the gift bags. He's even said to have demanded that Katie go on a rigorous diet to quickly lose her baby weight before the wedding. And of course, he insisted that she change her name to Kate Cruise.
Getting Married in Italy
If Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes have inspired you to have a destination wedding in Italy, check out Italy for Romantics, Italy's marriage license laws and destination wedding advice. You might also want to look at this list of the 10 most romantic wedding locations in the world.
See pictures of Tom and Katie's Wedding Preparations and Celebrities Arriving