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Posts Tagged ‘Church of Scientology’

Twenty-Seven Years Later, L. Ron Hubbard Biography Finally Gets a U.S. Release

BareFacedMessiahIt’s great to see the byline of Tony Ortega in the New York Post. The founder of The Underground Bunker and executive editor of The Raw Story lays out the rich details framing the very belated arrival in the U.S. of Bare-Faced Messiah, a 1987 biography by British journalist Russell Miller of Church of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard.

The Church successfully derailed U.S. publication with two years of litigation. However, thanks to independent publisher Silvertail Books, Bare-Faced Messiah was finally released stateside on March 18.

A portion of the book covers the same territory as Paul Thomas Anderson‘s acclaimed drama The Master. Amazingly, Miller says he was never consulted for the project:

I spoke to Miller recently and asked him if Anderson had ever reached out to him, since it seemed obvious that his book had been mined for that material. “I didn’t know about this until the bloody film was out. Had I known this was in the pipeline, I would have got my agent to ask to see the script.”

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Leah Remini Aims Another Dart at the Church of Scientology

ShutterstockLeahReminiLeah Remini‘s LAPD missing-person report may have been quickly dissipated. But the former Scientologist and current Dancing with the Stars contestant still has a lot of fight left in her.

Per some eagle-eyed monitoring of the Comal County, Texas District Court docket by blogger Tony Ortega, Remini has agreed to provide a deposition later this month in connection with a harassment lawsuit brought against the Church and leader David Miscavige by Monique Rathbun. The deposition is scheduled to be taken October 15 in Los Angeles. From Ortega’s post:

While watching the docket in Monique’s lawsuit, we noticed today a reference to a transaction fee for a subpoena that listed Remini’s name. We then called [her attorney Ray] Jeffrey, who confirmed that he had talked to the actress and that she had agreed to give the deposition — which is happening one day after Jeffrey is scheduled to depose former Scientology spokesman Tommy Davis in Austin.

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Tony Ortega Posts Another Open Letter to Tom Cruise

As with almost all things Scientology/media related, it started with Tony Ortega. The former Village Voice EIC, now blogging at The Underground Bunker, was first to the Leah Remini defection story ahead of the New York Post, Hollywood Reporter and countless other outlets.

Today, Ortega revisits an even bigger CoS celebrity story – Tom Cruise’s deafening silence – in the form of a second open letter to the actor. He posted the first in February 2012, while still at the Voice, and today asks once again how the man with the million-dollar smile can tolerate the sanctioned environment of his billion-dollar spiritual leader:

You remember the stink that Leah raised at your wedding to Katie Holmes in 2006? Leah was surprised to see that your best man, Scientology leader David Miscavige, was there without his wife, Shelly. And when she asked about it, Tommy Davis told her, “You don’t have the f*cking rank to ask about Shelly…”

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KCET May Sell Studio to Church of Scientology

The LA Times is reporting that public television station KCET is in talks to sell their historic Sunset Boulevard studio to the Church of Scientology. The Los Feliz studio dates back to 1912, and was once the home of Monogram Pictures and Allied Artists. According to the LA Times, the Sunset Blvd. property has an assessed value of $14.1 million. KCET responded to the rumors with a post on the station website:

We would like to respond to the erroneous information being circulated about KCET. Here is the truth: KCET is NOT being sold. We are firmly committed to being Southern California’s independent public TV station.

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Jury Still Out on Butcher ‘Guru to The Stars’ Trial

queenlatifah.jpgThe jury is still out on the Feline Butcher — holistic health guru to such stars as Tom Cruise, Lisa Marie Presley and Queen Latifah — who is facing 17 counts of practicing medicine without a license and one count of grand theft.

The jury’s verdict could put Butcher’s holistic health clinic out of business, but it could also put her behind bars. It would weigh heavily on the Church of Scientology, which is a big supporter of Butcher’s anti-drug regimen for treatment. Butcher is an avowed high-ranking church member.lisamarie.jpg

The trial for the faux practitioner came to a close Monday in Los Angeles Superior Court with numerous Scientology disciples present in the courtroom and the jury has been deliberating ever since.

Butcher, who has treated with holistic techniques other stars like Berry Gordy and Smokey Robinson, was investigated specifically by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Halt Authority Task Force in the case of photographer Clive McLean, who died in 2005.

Mclean’s widow, Erica McLean, says that Butcher, being a Scientologist, encouraged her husband to abandon chemotherapy in favor of a regimen of “vitamins and magic drops.”

McLean, who was assisted by private investigator Paul Barresi, claims that the couple paid close to $120,000 on useless treatments. Barresi was a friend to Clive McLean as well, having been photographed by McLean for Hustler Magazine. Barresi turned over a cache of information about Butcher to the Halt Authority Task Force.

See more of the Butcher trial story below:

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