15/05/2012 11:36 BST | Updated 15/05/2012 12:11 BST

Tom Cruise, Rock Of Ages Cover Shoot For W Magazine (PICTURES)

Rock of Ages is not scheduled for release until June but Tom Cruise's pitch to be the undisputed king of hair rock seems unlikely to be challenged.

As these images from W Magazine reveal, the 49-year-old sports an impressive six pack, with inkings and supermodels clinging to his tough-guy physique.

Long hair, eyeliner, rock fingers and a lasciviously protruding tongue also grace the pages, as do a pair of pistol tattoos, saucily pointing to the prize below his belt.

Cruise told W he had learned to dance watching Soul Train as a child and said he'd decided to take a role in a musical after wife Katie Holmes expressed enthusiasm.

He said: "Kate loves musicals. She sings and dances, and we kind of went through the history of musicals together. And Suri loved Hairspray.


"With kids, you watch everything over and over; I watched Hairspray 15 times with Suri. I thought Adam Shankman did a great job directing the movie, so I arranged to meet him and said, 'Where's our musical?'

"He came back and said, 'Rock of Ages.' We went and saw it in L.A., and for me,I didn't know how to play the character like that. I had to find my own Stacee Jaxx."

Ably supporting Cruise in his quest to channel his inner Whitesnake are Russell Brand, Julianne Hough, Paul Giamatti and Catherine Zeta Jones. Oh, and a monkey. What's not to love?

Cruise added: "I needed to find out if I could really sing! Ron [Anderson, formerly a vocal coach for Axl Rose] came in and worked with me. And then I had to learn how to play guitar. I'm very good at air guitar and air drums, but I had never played an actual guitar.

"After working for weeks on Stacee's technical skills, I was thinking about the character, and I said, 'You know what? I need a monkey.' Adam said, 'What the f**k are you talking about?' And I said, 'I'm serious, I need a monkey.'

"When Stacee's not onstage, he's kind of sad. And I thought, This guy has to have a monkey that's his best friend. Adam found this baboon. He sent me the baboon's audition tape, and I said, 'The baboon's name has to be Hey Man'. Stacee Jaxx doesn't work without Hey Man."