Since leaving the Church of Scientology in 2013, actress Leah Remini has been very outspoken about her criticisms of the organization, which she sees as a cult that is defrauding people.
Remini wrote a book about her experiences with the church, which was created by science fiction author L. Ron Hubbard in 1954, and she currently stars in a documentary series called “Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath” where she talks to ex-members of the church about their experiences.
The most famous member of the Church of Scientology is 55-year-old actor Tom Cruise. Cruise’s ties to the organization have led to controversy before, such as a 2005 interview with Matt Lauer on “The Today Show.” The actor came across as smug and delusional to many in a heated debate, during which he argued against anti-depressants and specifically called out actress Brooke Shields for taking them.
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In a recent Reddit “Ask Me Anything” to promote the second season of her television show, a user asked Remini if she thought Cruise was a “good person.”
She responded, “No! Just going to get straight to it, no! There is a public persona of the guy who looks at you directly in the eye and shakes your hand and hugs you and is an attentive person to you, and there’s the person behind the mask who is a completely different person.”
She continued, “Someone could say we all have that — what we are to the public and who we are behind the scenes, but the people who are around Tom and work for Tom, not even people who are Scientologists, they will say he is diabolical … People who’ve worked with me will say I can be an a****** — all actors can be. That is different. He’s very similar to David Miscavige, they could be twins.”
Miscavige is the current leader of the Church of Scientology. More specifically, he is the chairman of the board for the Religious Technology Center, which controls trademarks and copyrights related to Scientology.
Miscavige’s behavior has been part of the focus of Remini’s show as ex-members have accused him of abuse, harassment, and other criminal behavior.
In an interview last year with Larry King, Remini talked about Tom Cruise, specifically saying the actor knows about the questionable practices of Scientology. “Tom is very well-aware of what is Scientology, truthfully. He is very well-aware that it’s an organization that is defrauding people out of their lives.”
One of Scientology’s biggest strongholds is in Hollywood, where there are many members including John Travolta, Cruise, and actress Elisabeth Moss. There are also ex-members in Hollywood besides Remini who have been outspoken about their negative experiences with the church, including Academy Award winning filmmaker Paul Haggis and “Chicago P.D.” star Jason Beghe.
According to Remini, current members of the Church of Scientology are not happy with her and are not allowed to speak to her. At the Television Critics Association Awards this year, Moss reportedly left the room when Remini took the stage.
“Elisabeth Moss believes that she can’t talk to me,” Remini told The Hollywood Reporter about the event. “There’s a thing in Scientology called ‘acceptable truth.’ It means you only say what’s acceptable to the public. But she believes that I’m an anti-social personality — because I’ve spoken out against Scientology. So she isn’t allowed to talk to me. And me, knowing that, I wouldn’t put her in the awkward position.”
Other Hollywood scientologists such as actors Giovanni Ribisi and Danny Masterson have called out Remini for her work against the church.
Remini is not letting any of it stop her. She recently told The Hollywood Reporter she would continue to shed light on the church and that the second season of her show, currently airing on A&E, will reveal even more shocking “abusive practices” taking place within the organization.