Home Celebrity The New Yorker Magazine Takes on Scientology in Hollywood: Bravo!

The New Yorker– venerable and respected–has taken on the Church of Scientology.

Lawrence Wright’s piece, called “The Apostate: Paul Haggis vs. the Church of Scientology,” chronicles the Oscar winning screenwriter and film director’s departure from Scientology after 34 years. It’s something this reporter has written about often, not only Haggis’s exit but that of other Hollywood stars. Wright goes even further: he has actor Josh Brolin describe his brief encounter with Scientology. It scared him. Brolin–smart, respected–has taken a big chance here because Scientology is vindictive. They’ve already called him a liar less than 24 hours since his anecdote was published.

I know Josh Brolin, and he’s no liar. He says he saw John Travolta try to “heal” Marlon Brando using Scientology techniques. “It was f–ing bizarre,” Brolin said.

I told readers of this column last year that Haggis left Scientology for two reasons: their campaign for Prop 8 against gay marriage, and for their treatment of former members. Haggis told me that when his in-laws left the Church, he and his wife were told to have nothing to do with them anymore. They banned the Haggis’s child from seeing his grandparents. This went on for a year, Paul told me. The toll it took was brutal on the family. Haggis’s in laws sued to see their grandson. Finally, Haggis and his wife, actress Deborah Rennard, caved in, reunited with the grandparents, and exited Scientology. The whole story, in detail, is in The New Yorker piece.

For years I’ve written about the horrors of Scientology, right up through Kelly Preston, John Travolta’s wife, confronting me in Memphis on the night before Isaac Hayes’s bizarre Scientology tinged funeral. Preston and Tommy Davis, chief celebrity wrangler for Scientology, then went to my bosses at Fox News to complain about me. Or more. I’ve also written about Tom Cruise‘s antics, Kirstie Alley‘s Scientology based diet plan, about Davis’s wife, Jessica Feschbach, who was Katie Holmes’s “monitor” when she first was scooped up into Cruise’s world and cut off from family and friends.  I also wrote about actor Jason Beghe, and how he escaped after 14 years. And lots more. Lawrence Wright‘s piece–which is long and incredibly detailed and comprehensive–is a brilliant job and a must read.


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9 replies to this post
  1. “Nothing weird about Michael Jackson” that is a matter of opinion. I think you will find the article was about the oddities of Scientology not Michael Jackson. I cimmented that he was smart enough not to get involved, he was not very smart in alot of his other decisions, too many and too boring to list here.

  2. LMP tried to get MJ involved in Scientology. Apparently he took some tests or whatever crap they do. He thought it was dumb and “not spiritual”. Nothing weird about Michael Jackson.

  3. Why do rich famous powerful people join this dangerous cult!?

    Its so funny imagining Travolta healing Brando. I can just see Travolta screaming and waving his fingers and hands in a suit with his wig on.

  4. It makes you wonder about Nicole Kidmans adopted children, she is always being knocked for not being with them but I doubt she has any say in the matter. I think she is afraid to say too much.

  5. What exactly is Scientology teaching? And doesn’t Jehova’s Witnesses (and probably other sects) alson teaches people to “shun” the infidels, those who leave and “immorals”?

  6. Bravo indeed Rioget. As someone who has spoken out against this organization since 2006, it is fantastic to see this article in the New Yorker. For FAR too long Scientology’s abuses have been ignored by the press and authorities alike.

  7. Keep it up, Roger!!!! I can’t imagine Travolta talking Marlon Brando into such bullshit and I doubt if he was successful. Wonder if Kelly Preston ever wonders about the marvelous advice Scientology gave her about her son?
    Horrifying people-creeps of the earth. MMH

  8. Scientology is a very scary thing, people think that Mormons and Jehovah;s Witnesses are weird but they are nothing compared to Scientology. It amazes me how seemingly sensible people get hooked up in it, John Travolta and his wife seem to me to be decent people yet they are deeply involved. Not so sure on the other hand about Lisa Marie Presley, I think she tried very hard to get the King of Pop into the church and failed miserably! He may have been weird and strange but at least that was one sound decision that he made!

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