BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (Zap2it.com) — Tom Cruise credits Scientology for the inner peace and serenity he projects in his latest film “The Last Samurai.””Well, it’s known I’m a Scientologist, and that helped me to find the inner peace and great stability and tools to help others,” Cruise says in a very candid press conference for his latest film opening Dec. 5. He plays an alcoholic Civil War veteran hired by the Japanese government to quell a Samurai rebellion, but who ends up joining the profoundly religious warriors.
The controversial religion is also embraced by such actors as John Travolta, Anne Archer, Jason Lee, Isaac Hayes (Chef in “South Park”) and Nancy Cartwright (Bart in “The Simpsons.”) It was founded by American science fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard. Although it qualifies as a religion for tax purposes in the United States, Scientology isn’t recognized as a church in some other countries, and critics have called it an abusive cult.
In the 90-minute interview on Saturday (Nov. 15), attended by Zap2it.com, Cruise mentions Hubbard as a “great teacher” and “how he found out why there are wars and why people go to war and that communication is the universal solvent.”
Cruise also speaks about personally witnessing how Scientology has helped illiterate homeless people to read, kept children off “lethal drugs” for Attention Deficit Disorder, and how their Narc-Anon program has rehabilitated hundreds of thousands of people “to live drug-free lives and go back to society and not feel that they have a disease.”
He acknowledged that international film critics may draw parallels between “The Last Samurai” and America’s invasion of Iraq.
“Wars don’t resolve conflict, ideas do,” Cruise says. “You look how history keeps repeating itself.”
Stopping short of blatant criticism of the Bush administration, he simply smiles and adds, “I want a world without war and a world without insanity.”