Celebrity Scientologists: 15 Current and Former Members

Alex Gibney’s searing exposé over the Church of Scientology debuted on HBO Mar. 29 to rave reviews for its comprehensive look at science fiction author L. Ron Hubbard’s notorious tax-exempt organization.

While Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief does not present a lot of new evidence against the cult/religion, one new claim Gibney’s film does make is there are now fewer than 50,000 practicing members. As the film draws to its conclusion, many former Scientology heavyweights reveal how they were able to walk away.

As members exit the church en masse, its most-dedicated and high profile followers continue to legitimize David Miscavige’s notorious religion, which was originally founded by Hubbard in 1954.

Going Clear takes an in-depth look at the group’s alleged behind-the-scenes practices, and the lives of high profile members John Travolta and Tom Cruise. However, the two megastars are not the only major entertainment figures with ties to the church.

Business Insider recently compiled a list of both current and former church members, and it contains some familiar names and faces.

From Television and film, to national news, here is a list of notable stars connected to the Church of Scientology:

Greta Van Susteren:

The Fox News host and her husband are both members of the church. She once told People magazine: “I am a strong advocate of their ethics.”

Kirstie Alley:

The Cheers alum star says Scientology helped her overcome cocaine addiction.

Jason Lee:

The actor and producer is “obsessed” with the Scientology, according to his ex-wife Carmen Llewellyn. She reportedly left Lee over his dedication to the group.

Beck:

The Grammy Award-winning musician is a life-long Scientologist. “There’s whole aspects (of Scientology) that you probably don’t see,” Beck was quoted as saying.

Danny Masterson:

The That ’70’s Show alum is a member. “The definition of Scientology is ‘the study of knowledge,'” Masterson has previously stated. “Obviously, the more knowledge you have in a given field, such as life, the more confident you are as a person.”

Laura Prepon:

Also from That ’70s Show, the current Orange Is The New Black cast member is part of the church.

Elisabeth Moss:

Best known for her portrayal of Peggy Olson on AMC’s Mad Men, Moss was first introduced to Scientology by her parents.

Nancy Cartwright:

Known as the voice of Bart Simpson on the animated show The Simpsons, she once said the religion made her want to become god.

Juliette Lewis:

The famed actress told Vanity Fair: “I think there’s so much confusion because people don’t understand a religion where you can be another religion but you can still practice Scientology… That’s why it’s completely progressive. It’s just tools for living.”

Jenna Elfman:

The Dharma and Greg actress previously compared Scientology’s critics to ancient Romans in their attacks on Christians: “If someone starts talking to me negatively about something they’ve never actually studied that actual text of, I don’t really admire them very much because it shows they don’t have much integrity, so I just kind of ignore them.”

Kelly Preston:

The actress and wife of John Travolta has said the church helped her deal with the death of the couple’s teenage son, Jett, in 2009. She also said she would “forever be indebted” to the group.

Anne Archer:

The Fatal Attraction actress’s son, Tommy Davis, is the spokesman of Scientology.

Leah Remini:

The King of Queens star publicly exited the church in 2014. “I believe that people should be able to question things,” she said. “I believe that people should value family, and value friendships, and hold those things sacrosanct. That for me is what I’m about. It wouldn’t matter what it was, simply because no one is going to tell me how I need to think, no one is going to tell me who I can, and cannot, talk to.”

Peaches Geldof:

The deceased daughter of Bob Geldof spoke of her standing with the group in 2009: “I’ve been one for a while now,” she said. ‘It’s like, I was confused about what path to go through and I feel like I needed a spiritual path.”

Jerry Seinfeld:

The comedian said he studied Scientology 30 years ago, and even credited it with making him funnier. “It was a very helpful thing to learn,” he said of Scientology’s impact on his comedic skills.

* This list was compiled with the help of an article originally written by Business Insider journalists Aly Weisman, Kirsten Acuna and Ashley Lutz. Read the full story here.

Watch a preview of the Alex Gibney HBO doc below:


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