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Scarlett Johansson escaped Cruise’s plans, USA
June 20, 2005 • Tuesday June 21, 2005

Tom Cruise might have tried to recruit Scarlett Johansson to Scientology long before he set his sights on fresh-faced fiance Katie Holmes. reports that the Lost in Translation star, who was expected to co-star with Cruise in MI:3 but dropped out due to “scheduling conflicts,” attended a private tour of a Scientology center with her would-be co-star before fleeing the building and subsequently the project.

“After two hours of proselytizing,” according to, “Cruise opened a door to reveal a second room full of upper-level Scientologists who had been waiting to dine with the pair, at which point the cool-headed ingenue politely excused herself.”

Rumors of Cruise’s handlers auditioning a host of young starlets to be his “girlfriend” and convert to the controversial religion have been plaguing the internet since Cruise and Holmes were caught on camera together in Rome earlier this year.

“Is this Tom Cruise’s version of a first date? It’s becoming increasingly difficult to make distinctions between his personal, professional and religious life,” Rick Ross of told “Tom Cruise and Scientology seem intent on recruiting a hot young star. Apparently, Scarlett Johansson flunked her test, but Katie Holmes passed.”

Tom’s engagement must come as good news for Keri Russell, who has just been cast opposite Cruise in MI:3. She might have had difficulty juggling Scientology with her Mormon background.

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