The 'Rock of Ages' star - whose third wife Katie Holmes filed for divorce from him last week after five years of marriage - topped the annual list by Forbes after earning $75 million between May 2011 and May 2012.
Cruise enjoyed a successful year after 'Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol' earned more than $700 million at global box offices.
Leonardo DiCaprio - who was last year's top earner - came joint second with funnyman Adam Sandler, who both earned $37 million.
Former professional wrestler Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson was in fourth, earning $36 million after one of his films 'Fast Five', took in an impressive $626 million at the box office.
Comedian Ben Stiller was at number five with $33 million, while Sacha Baron Cohen was just behind him, taking $30 million.
Others in the top 10 included Johnny Depp and Will Smith, while Taylor Lautner beat his 'Twilight Saga' co-star Robert Pattinson into 11th place.
In compiling the list, Forbes considers factors including upfront pay, profit participation, residuals, endorsements and advertising work.
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