Saturday, June 25, 2005

Johannson doesn't fall for it but Holmes does

How desperate is Tom Cruise to diss psychiatry and join the Church of Scientology? Well, it now turns out Katie Holmes wasn't Cruise's first mark.

Scarlett Johannson was widely considered having the inside track to get the female lead in Mission Impossible 3. She backed out, citing "scheduling conflicts." It now appears it's a lot more complicated than that.

Earlier this week, MSNBC reported that Cruise was trying to recruit Scarlett Johannson to join the controversial New Age religion. It's not entirely clear if it was intended to be a quid pro quo to get the female lead in Mission Impossible 3.

But it does seem that Cruise invited her over to the Church's "Celebrity Centre" in Los Angeles. Ostensibly a meeting to talk shop, Johannson was instead subjected to two straight hours of proselytizing before the main event -- a private dinner with Cruise and some of the church's leaders, hoping to get her to convert.

Johannson refused to take the bait. She excused herself and ran out of the compound. Good for her.

Cruise can claim that Christianity and Scientology are compatible, but they're not. Run your search engine and you'll find any of a list of articles from Catholics, apologetics and mainline Protestants that state this plain fact.

(I found this story by accident, by the way, but I'm posting it now because there's a lot at stake here, and not just the reputations of the principals involved.)

So what does Cruise do? He reverts to Plans B and C. He cast Keri Russell (Felicity) in the movie, but she's a devout Mormon. Still needing a high profile recruit, he finds Katie Holmes.

My only comment to Miss Holmes: From one Catholic to another, don't let the door hit you on the way out.

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