In early February, Tom Cruise was photographed landing his helicopter at a heliport in Battersea London after a day spent filming the next installment of his hit Mission: Impossible franchise.

The 61-year-old actor was all smiles as he walked the tarmac and happily greeted the grounds crew before making his way to his waiting car. He may not have been jumping on a couch on national TV, but it was clear to those who know Tom that he was a man in love.

The A-lister went public with his romance with Russian socialite Elsina Khayrova at a party in London’s Grosvenor Square in early December. According to a source, Tom recently asked Elsina to marry him and was knee-deep in planning a lavish, $10 million wedding when the 36-year-old former model dumped him.

The source exclusively tells In Touch Elsina initially said yes to Tom’s proposal but got freaked out by his intensity. “She started questioning why Tom was in such a rush to tie the knot,” explains the source. “It was all moving too fast. She got scared off.”

Now a desperate Tom is determined to get her back. “He’s been sending her flowers and jewelry, but Elsina says she needs time apart to think,” says the source, noting that the divorced mom of two is unlikely to change her mind. “It seems like for her, it’s over.”

Fairy-Tale Fail

After three divorces, Tom thought he’d finally found The One in Elsina. “He fell for her hard and the romance was going along smoothly,” says the source. “They knew everything about each other. She knew all about his past, and he was fascinated with learning everything he could about her.”

The duo reportedly met through mutual pals in London’s high society circle, and spent most of their time together in the U.K. Tom owns a six-bedroom penthouse apartment in London, while Elsina — who was previously married to a Russian diamond tycoon and is the daughter of a well-connected Russian politician — reportedly owns homes in London as well as Dubai and Cyprus.

Tom Cruise ‘Scared Off’ Girlfriend Elsina Khayrova
Theo Wargo / Staff

Multiple sources reveal Tom had met her two kids. Elsina seemed like a good match for the Mission: Impossible star. The actor is a known fitness fanatic and adrenaline junkie, often doing his own death-defying movie stunts.

“Elsina’s a catch,” agrees a second source. “She’s gorgeous, has a great sense of style, loves a good party and loves adventures — like skiing and trying new restaurants. She’s always down for any activity. She also takes really good care of herself and is always at Pilates.”

In Too Deep

But it was too much too soon for her. “Tom was in love with Elsina, and when he’s in love he moves fast,” says the first source. “Then he did what he always does when he finds a woman he loves, he asked her to marry him.” Elsina was shocked and overwhelmed, but ultimately accepted Tom’s proposal.

Just days later, however, she began having second thoughts when he began feverishly planning their nuptials. “He was obsessed with getting all the details exactly right, like Elsina’s favorite flowers and colors, her favorite foods — even her wedding dress and the honeymoon,” says the source.

Of course, the devout Scientologist wanted a double-ring wedding, per the church’s traditions, likely including the A-R-C triangle, representing “Affinity, Reality and Communication — the component parts of Understanding,” per the controversial church. “Tom was handling every aspect of it and it started freaking Elsina out,” explains the source.

When she told Tom she was ending things, he was devastated. “She sat Tom down and told him she couldn’t go through with it. She explained that she had gotten caught up in the moment, but she needed a break. He was shocked that she changed her mind,” adds the source. “She broke his heart.”

Dark Secrets

More than Tom’s heart is broken. A third source says Elsina may not have signed an NDA (nondisclosure agreement) when they got together — which might leave him open to her spilling about their time together. “Elsina might feel she shouldn’t have to sign an NDA considering she’s a very rich socialite with family and political connections.”

That leaves Tom filled with regret about pouring his heart out to her and trying to rush things. “He’s in panic mode,” says the first source, “over fears he opened up too quickly and went too far, and that Elsina may reveal intimate details of their relationship.” Adds the source: “He really thought he’d finally met his next wife. It’s a huge loss.”

For more than four decades, Tom Cruise has been one of America’s biggest movie stars, and his new deal with Warner Bros. Discovery — to produce and develop franchise films as well as original fare — means he’ll remain a power player for years to come. Yet, as of late, the Top Gun star has been living far away from the bright lights of Hollywood: He now calls England home.

“Tom is loving his new life in London,” reveals an insider. “He feels like he has been given a fresh start and is enjoying the change of pace.”

Tom originally moved to the U.K. to shoot back-to-back Mission Impossible flicks, but he liked it so much, he ended up sticking around! According to the insider, the leading man currently resides in “an upscale building” in the posh Knightsbridge district bordering Hyde Park.

“In L.A., Tom felt like he was confined to his mansion,” says the insider. “He is single and his kids don’t live with him, so he was often alone and felt secluded. But he’s found an area in London where he feels comfortable and can socialize with people in a way he could never do in California because of his fame.”

Stepping Out

While he’s been spotted hanging with Prince William and Princess Kate and dining out at swanky eatery Novikov, Tom loves the way London living allows him to meet regular-ish people, too.

“He has been socializing with and making friends with other people in his building and often hosts tea parties and dinners,” spills the insider. “In L.A., everyone is connected to Hollywood, so he’s enjoying meeting people from different professions and learning about them. It’s something he hasn’t really been able to do in many years.”

Tom Cruise ‘Scared Off’ Girlfriend Elsina Khayrova
WPA Pool / Pool

Of course, Tom is also taking advantage of the city’s famous culture and nightlife. “It’s refreshing for him to be able to go to private clubs and restaurants and go unnoticed,” says the source. That includes going on dates with gorgeous women like Elsina without causing a huge media frenzy.

“They were able to enjoy many nights out without paparazzi following them — another thing he could rarely do in L.A.,” points out the insider.

Still, there’s no telling where the adventure-loving celeb might ultimately end up, shares the insider: “He sees himself staying in London for the time-being, but it might not be a completely permanent move.”

Have a tip? Send it to us! Email In Touch at