The joy of sects, Tom Cruise style

The bombshell biography of Tom Cruise by author Andrew Morton has put Princess Diana’s confidant firmly in the cross-hairs of the megawatt star and Scientology bigwigs.

More than a year ago, Cruise’s lawyer, Bert Fields, hinted that Morton better watch his step.

“I wrote a letter to Mr Morton back in November 2005 and said he obviously was entitled to write the book but ‘make sure you check your facts’ … If he tries to use my letter to create the impression that Mr Cruise did have a gay affair, we will certainly sue … because the story is false. Mr Cruise is not gay’,” Mr Fields wrote in a letter.

No such claim of homosexuality is made in the new unauthorised biography about Cruise, which will be released in the US on January 15.

But it contains other startling allegations, including:

  • IN 1999, Scientologists asked Cruise to take a course that would help pinpoint “those in his life who create problems and difficulties,” the book claims. That person, Morton claimed, was Nicole Kidman. Cruise divorced Kidman in March 2001;
  • CRUISE hooked up with Spanish screen siren Penelope Cruz but, the book claims, the relationship ended after Cruz’s dad – who the book claims shunned the sect – had a heart attack in December 2003; and
  • IN 2005, weeks before Cruise first met Katie Holmes, Colombian model Sofia Vergara abruptly stopped seeing Cruise and, according to the book, “disappeared” after allegedly concluding she was being used “as a high-profile Scientology recruit who would be an alluring figurehead for a future recruitment drive in Latin America.”

Cruise was introduced to The Church of Scientology after his 1986 film Top Gun by actress Mimi Rogers – who was born into the sect.

After reading picture books on Scientology, the book claims, Cruise fully embraced the beliefs and married Rogers in 1987.

Recruiting the superstar was a huge boost to the sect, which actively recruited celebrities.

“The most important recruit ever is in the process of being secured. His arrival will change the face of Scientology forever,” Scientology’s powerful leader, David Miscavige, declared at a church rally at the time, according to the book.

Cruise kept the faith but kicked Mimi to the kerb after two years, marrying Kidman, whom he met on the set of dud flick Days of Thunder.

“Shortly after Kidman gave a Newsweek interview (where she said, “a big part of me is still a Catholic girl”) senior Scientology leaders, including Mr Miscavige, Ray Mithoff and others, discussed their strategy to keep Tom firmly in the fold,” the book claims.

“The fear was that a lukewarm Nicole could fatally compromise Tom’s commitment to his faith.”

In January 2001, the Kidman-Cruise union was over after 10 years.

However, the book claims, Cruise broke the crushing news to Kidman through a lawyer.

Lawyers told Kidman that “she would never make another movie” and should “buy a one-way ticket back to Sydney,” according to the book.

Kidman discovered she was pregnant just after the very public break-up. Months later, she miscarried.

Upon hearing the news, Cruise sent flowers but never visited, according to the book.

In mid-2000, according to the book, Cruise was “entranced” by Cruz after seeing her in the Spanish film Open Your Eyes and asked her to reprise the role in Vanilla Sky.

Cruise took her to the Scientologists’ hangout, Hollywood Celebrity Center, the book reveals.

Consumer Alert: Scientology Quackery

“Scientology is evil; its techniques are evil; its practice is a serious threat to the community, medically, morally, and socially; and its adherents are sadly deluded and often mentally ill… (Scientology is) the world’s largest organization of unqualified persons engaged in the practice of dangerous techniques which masquerade as mental therapy.”
– Justice Anderson, Supreme Court of Victoria, Australia, quoted atWhat judges have to say about Scientology

“It didn’t hurt that Tom’s love interest Penelope Cruz came from Spain, a market that Scientology was looking to exploit,” Morton writes.

During this time, Cruise nearly reached the top level in Scientology hierarchy – “second in command,” Morton claims – and Mr Miscavige spoke of him in almost mythical terms.

“Across 90 nations, 5000 people hear his word of Scientology,” the Los Angeles Times reported.

In March 2004, Cruise cut ties with longtime agent Pat Kingsley for speaking out against Scientology as bad for his image, the book relates.

“From that moment, (Cruz) was doomed,” Morton quotes a “Hollywood insider” as saying.

The relationship with Cruz ended in 2004, months after Cruz’s father – who considered Scientology to be offensive – had a heart attack.

Cruise began calling Alias star Jennifer Garner but she was not impressed by his sentimental phone messages that asked “if she knew what freedom was,” according to the book.

Model Sofia Vergara came into his life in February 2005. Cruise was smitten, sending her text messages, flowers, chocolates – and Scientology literature, according to the book.

However she quickly found that Cruise’s entourage was, in her words, “powerful and authoritarian,” Morton’s book claims.

Vergara told friends that “she had been deliberately targeted not only as a possible bride for Tom, but as a high-profile Scientology recruit who would be an alluring figurehead for a future recruitment drive in Latin America,” the book alleges.

At Easter in 2005, Vergara fled to a secret location, refusing to answer Cruise’s messages, the book alleges.

Less than three weeks later Cruise met Katie Holmes, who answered his call to interview her for the leading-lady role in his next film, Morton claims. On the list to be interviewed were single stars Jessica Alba, Kate Bosworth and Scarlett Johansson.

After meeting her, Cruise sent over a limo filled with chocolates and flowers and handed her a Scientology handbook, according to Morton.

The following year, the much-publicised Oprah couch-jumping incident occurred, as well as Paramount’s decision to drop Cruise.

Katie started to change. She took on lifelong Scientologist handler Jessica Feshbach Rodriguez as her best friend, changed her name to Kate and donned uncharacteristic couture wear, according to W magazine.

In June, Holmes joined the Church of Scientology, agreeing that “if she or any of her children were ever to suffer mental or terminal illness, they must turn only to Scientology’s treatments,” the book claims.

Four days later, Cruise proposed to Holmes in Paris. Soon after, Holmes announced she was pregnant.

“Some sect members sincerely believed Holmes was carrying the baby who would be the vessel for (sect founder) L. Ron Hubbard ‘s spirit when he returned,” Morton writes.

According to Scientology principles, Cruise maintained a silent household for the expectant mother, reports said, including erecting boards to remind people to remain quiet and forcing cleaners to do their tasks in silence.

Suri was born in April 2006, and a simple wedding ceremony followed.

Morton, who spent two years researching to the book, claimed that he feared the expose would anger some Scientologists and intended to “disappear for a while”.

Cruise’s lawyer, Mr Field, said that the star “has no intention” of reading the biography.

“He has been told about it and naturally he knows there are a bunch of lies about him,” he said. “Morton should be ashamed of himself.”

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Religion News Blog posted this on Tuesday January 8, 2008.
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