The "Westworld" actress reveals Tom was "a very dominant individual" who tried to workshop a tense scene with the Brit and left her feeling terrible about her performance.
"He tries super hard to be a nice person," Newton tells Vulture, "but the pressure - he takes on a lot. And I think he has this sense that only he can do everything as best as it can be done."
"We were doing this night scene, there were so many extras with pyrotechnics and you name it, and it was a scene with him and me on the balcony. And I don't think it was a very well-written scene. I get angry with him (Cruise's character). We're frustrated with each other. And we're looking out over Spain. It wasn't going well."
"And (director) John Woo, bless him, wasn't there. He was downstairs looking at everything on a monitor. And John had made a decision at the beginning of the movie, unbeknownst certainly to me, that he didn't speak English, which I think was very helpful to him, but it was extremely unhelpful to the rest of us. So this scene was happening, and Tom was not happy with what I was doing because I had the s**ttiest lines."
Cruise got so frustrated with having to try to explain what he wanted, he suggested that he and Thandie role swap.
"We rehearsed and they recorded it, and then he goes, 'I'll be you. You be me'. So we filmed the entire scene with me being him - because, believe me, I knew the lines by then - and him playing me. And it was the most unhelpful... I can't think of anything less revealing. It just pushed me further into a place of terror and insecurity. It was a real shame. And bless him. And I really do mean bless him, because he was trying his damnedest."
To make matters worse, Thandie's focus was distracted by a zit on her co-star's nose.
"I remember at the beginning of the night, seeing this slight red mark on his nose, and by the end of the night, I kid you not - this is how his metabolism is so fierce - he had a big whitehead where that red dot was," the actress adds. "It would take anyone else 48 hours to manifest a zit. I saw it growing, and it was like the zit was me, just getting bigger and bigger."
When they reshot the scene a week later, Thandie stepped it up after realising what Cruise wanted, "He just wanted this alpha b**ch. And I did as best as I could. It's not the best way to get the best work out of someone... He (Cruise) wasn't horrible. It was just... he was really stressed."