The pair had been circling The 28th Amendment but chose instead to board the Kurt Wimmer-scripted espionage film.
Edwin A. Salt focuses on Cruise's CIA operative, who is accused of being a Russian sleeper agent. He must avoid capture long enough to clear his name.
Cruise has long been attached to the Wimmer script, which has seen two directors - Terry George and Peter Berg - depart the project in recent months.
Producers Lorenzo di Bonaventura and Sunil Perkash will oversee the film for Columbia Pictures.