Hollywood is eagerly anticipating Tom Cruise's upcoming film Vanilla Sky, which finds the actor reteaming with his Jerry Maguire writer/director, Cameron Crowe. But while the duo struck gold with the acclaimed sports flick, Crowe admits he still was shocked that the Hollywood heavyweight was interested in another partnership.

"I'm as surprised as anybody else that he wants to continue the collaboration — and delighted," Crowe tells TV Guide Online. "We had so much fun doing [Jerry Maguire] that we've been trying to figure out a way to get back together. The funny thing is, he is fun to write comedy for. And for some reason the combination of the stuff that I write and the stuff that he brings — it's funny to me."

Vanilla Sky, which Crowe describes as "a super contemporary love story," will pair Cruise with Penelope Cruz. Additionally, Cameron Diaz is in talks to take a supporting role in the film, which begins shooting this fall.

For his part, Crowe — whose latest effort, Almost Famous, hits theaters today — still can't believe his good fortune to be working with the three-time Oscar nominee. "It's the oddest thing," he marvels. "I always used to run into trouble trying to get like a so-called big name to do a script of mine. They would always say in one way or another 'This is a character part. I want to do the starring part. There's no starring part in this.'

"Tom Cruise is the biggest name in movies and he actually said, 'I want to play a character like John Cusack in Say Anything. I want to play a character romantic lead in something you've written,' Crowe adds. "It was such a gift."