Since his ex-wife in 1990 I am Rogers the introdujese in the Church of Scientology, Tom Cruise has become one of the most prominent public defenders of this controversial but powerful religious movement, founded in 1953 by the science fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard.
But as we have learned from the autobiography of his former representative, Michael Ovitz, the 57-year-old New Yorker would have taken the proselytizing of Scientology to unexpected limits during the filming of War of the Worlds –The successful remake directed by Steven Spielberg and released in 2005.
“Spielberg told me that on the set of War of the Worlds, Tom set up a Scientology booth to recruit followers”, Recalls Ovitz in the memoirs that he published at the end of last September (and that the British tabloid collects Mirror).
Indeed, the thing sounds like a real “alien invasion”Within the production –as the newspaper describes it Telegraph. And it is that, apparently, Spielberg would have ended up interceding with the study so that Cruise could get away with it and mount an official Scientology information and enlistment post. Of course, the director would have made it very clear that “no one was obliged to frequent it”.
Keep in mind that Ovitz was one of the most powerful men in Hollywood in the 80s and 90s – when he represented top figures such as Cruise through the well-known Creative Artists Agency (CAA) -, so his testimony does not it is not at all negligible. According to the account in the book, the aforementioned agency would have expressly recommended Cruise to separate his professional life from his relationship with Scientology.
“We advise our clients to keep their heads down and their mouths shut. At that time, Cruise’s profile as a Scientologist was minimal, because we had told him: “Keep your religion and your job separate.”
But Ovitz remembers how, when Cruise became more directly involved with Scientology, everyone prepared for what was to come: “Read Dianetics, the book by the founder of Scientology, L. Ron Hubbard, to better understand what we were up against. I went to see David Miscavige, Hubbard’s successor, and explained that we had a common interest: “We don’t want to see Tom’s name in the press for anything that has nothing to do with his career.”
The truth is that in 1995 Ovitz left the agency that he helped to create, to assume the presidency of the Walt Disney Company –Although he would only last in office until 1997. For his part, Cruise began to publicly express your support and commitment to the Church of Scientology -Something that would have created a significant gap between him and Spielberg, with whom he had already worked in Minority Report.
As reported Page Six in 2005, the well-known filmmaker got very angry when Cruise used his promotional appearances to rally against the use of Ritalin in children. Let’s remember that it was around that time that Cruise appeared in the Today Show with an extremely enthusiastic and passionate attitude (which some would call manic), trying to persuade the presenter Matt Lauer of the perversity of modern psychiatry and its prescriptions – and even accusing the actress Brooke Shields having advocated for medication to help treat her postpartum depression.
The supposed quarrel between Spielberg and Cruise would have reached such a point that close sources affirmed that “they would never work together again“–Although at that time Cruise’s lawyer, Bert Fields, denied in a letter to New York Post that the actor and the filmmaker had broken their friendship. The undeniable thing is that, since War of the WorldsCruise has not reappeared in any Spielberg movies.
On the other hand, we will not delve into the rumors that point to the supposed message in favor of Scientology that would hide the remake of War of the Worlds –A version that, in the face of the Martian origin of the invaders that the novel H. G. Wells, proposed aliens hibernating underground for thousands of years before emerging to the surface, who knows if in allusion to the destructive “Xenu” of the mythology created by Hubbard. If Cruise’s or his Church’s hand reaches that far, we can’t know for sure …
What is worth remembering is that, after the enormous stir caused by Cruise’s “coming out of the Scientologist closet” – it was rumored that the franchise of Mission Impossible was finished – the actor chose to keep his religious beliefs in a personal and private sphere – even apologizing to Brooke Shields for inviting her to his wedding with Katie Holmes.
And so today, at 57, Cruise focuses his public appearances on the purely professional and promotional, continues to function as a box office action star – despite the questioning of some – and plans to release the sequels Top Gun: Maverick (June 2020), Mission Impossible 7 & 8 (2021 and 2022) and Live Die Repeat and Repeat.
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How Tom Cruise got Scientology into ‘War of the Worlds’