Nicole Kidman almost got Tom Cruise to leave Scientology before the church split them up, claims report
While David Miscavige, the leader of the Church of Scientology, approved of their relationship earlier, he wasn't too happy when Cruise fell head over heels in love with Kidman
A new revelation about the controversial Church of Scientology has claimed that Nicole Kidman almost got Scientology fan-favorite Tom Cruise to leave the church.
The Daily Beast reported that while David Miscavige, the leader of the Church of Scientology, approved of their relationship earlier, he wasn't all too happy when Cruise fell head over heels in love with Kidman. But, she had his sway over him.
The "seed", as the Beast reported, goes back to 1989 when Cruise saw Kidman in 'Dead Calm', an Australian psychological thriller-horror film directed by Phillip Noyce. He instantly took to Kidman and even convinced the makers of 'Days of Thunder' to cast her as the leading lady to star beside him. This is the first of three films to star both Cruise and Kidman.
After its release, Cruise divorced his wife Mimi Rogers, who he was married to at the time. Rogers was the one who introduced him to Scientology. The church's fixer Marty Rathbun (known as the former senior executive of the Church of Scientology) allegedly went to serve her with the legal papers himself with a fellow church attorney. The divorce had seemed like a good idea to Miscavige.
"Miscavige’s concern was that Mimi was the daughter of this major ‘squirrel’ — someone who leaves the Church of Scientology but continues to do Scientology on their own — and her dad had started his own church," Tony Ortega, an expert on Scientology, told The Beast. "The story Marty Rathbun tells is that Miscavige made it clear that they thought the Nicole thing could be a fling to separate him from Mimi,” he said.
He laughs. “The part that didn’t work out was that Miscavige wasn’t planning on having Tom fall so head over heels for Nicole that he was soon talking about marrying her — and she had her own problem.”
Kidman studied Scientology for two years after the two got married and she even rose up the ranks of the church. However, she was "never gushingly enthusiastic about Scientology", Mike Rinder, a former senior executive in the Church of Scientology, recalled in the interview. By 1992, she had left the church after getting tired of Miscavige. Soon, Cruise followed suit.
The two went on to film 'Eyes Wide Shut' and they soon separated from Scientology. The leader who had always kept an eye on them couldn't anymore and it drove him "nuts".
Ortega said, "Miscavige used all of Cruise’s household employees, including his assistant Michael Doven, who spied on him for 10 years on behalf of the Church of Scientology, to give Miscavige daily reports of what Cruise was up to." Rinder added, "They were all Scientologists, so everything that went on in Tom’s life was reported to either Shelly or David Miscavige, and when they went to the UK for 'Eyes Wide Shut', they were sequestered."
“When they went off to shoot 'Eyes Wide Shut', it (bothered) Miscavige that Tom wasn’t calling him. He was so pissed about that," Rinder said. He even sent Rinder to pay Lee Ane, Cruise's sister a visit.
"She just said, ‘Oh no, they’re just really busy, and they have to do re-takes on every shot'. This was the standard line that was being used to explain why Tom was no longer in touch with Miscavige, and it was not a very satisfactory answer to Miscavige. That was when he told Marty that his assignment in life was to get Tom Cruise back onboard," Rinder said.
Rathbun, in the 2015 HBO documentary 'Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief' had admitted that he had been assigned to break the couple up and had hired private investigators to achieve the goal. He also added that Miscavige had given him orders to tap Kidman's phone. "And so I arranged through Scientology’s consigliere to get a private investigator who physically installed a wiretap on her phone. And those tapes would come in and I’d forward them to David Miscavige," Rathbun had said. She had become a liability for him, Rinder said.
Cruise served Kidman divorce papers in February 2001 and soon started dating Penelope Cruz. "Marty was auditing Tom to pump him up, and they were not only working on Tom but working on the kids — Isabella and Connor — to turn them against Nicole," Ortega said, “And by 2004, they had turned Tom into the most gung-ho Scientologist in the world. And that’s when Miscavige chose to recognize him for it.”