Movie star Tom Cruise is bracing for his most savage critical attack yet in a new magazine article about his loyalty to Scientology.
A doctored photograph of the actor in his underwear appears on the frontcover of US pop and politics magazine Radar with five arrows appearing to pierce his skin, suggesting the article inside, by investigative journalist Kim Masters, will leave him wounded.
The controversial piece is headlined: ‘Risky Business: the untold story of Scientology’s movie-star martyr’.
In the accompanying article, Masters speaks to a handful of former Scientologists and business acquaintances of Cruise, who all link the actor’s recent passion for the controversial religion to the fact he has risen through the Church to a level just under leaders like his close friend and Scientology chief David Miscavige.
One former Scientologist, who worked closely with the religion’s celebrity members, claims Cruise is close to becoming a member of the Church’s mythical Sea Org level or something similar.
She says, “You feel so good, it’s like you’re high on coke. If you look at him, he has that dedicated glare that Sea Org members have.”
High-level Scientologists insist the Sea Org level never existed and such claims are ridiculous.
– The Selling of a Church: The Courting of Celebrities
The article also suggests Cruise’s War of the Worlds director, Steven Spielberg, was far from happy about the actor’s Scientology-heavy interviews and romantic gestures for new girlfriend Katie Holmes at a time when he should have been promoting the summer blockbuster.
Producer Martin Levy coyly remarks: “It (the non-War of The Worlds talk) certainly took some of the emphasis away from where we would have liked it.”
Levy also tells Masters that Spielberg was upset when he saw Cruise’s famous sofa leaping episode on Oprah in May, as he declared his love for Holmes.
Masters writes: “When Spielberg later watched Cruise’s manic declaration of love, Levy says, he sensed that the film’s carefully orchestrated media plan might be slipping off the rails.”