Leah Remini claims that Tom Cruise asked her to use her influence at CBS to bully the network out of airing a negative story about the Church of Scientology.
“I got pressure to call Les Moonves at CBS to try and get a ‘60 Minutes’ report squashed,” Remini, a former Scientologist, said in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter. “I got a call from the church and Tom to call Les Moonves and use my influence to squash the story.”
Despite not wanting to, Remini — who starred on the CBS series “King of Queens” — says she spoke to the network’s chairman about the segment, and he made clear that he wasn’t going to change anything about it.
“So I called Les Moonves, even though I was really uncomfortable with it. And he said, ‘Listen — you’re not the only one who has called me about this and I have no right to interject my opinion of what I like or don’t like with the news organization of CBS and I will absolutely not engage this conversation. I’ll tell you or anyone else who calls me.’ He said, ‘I don’t give a s—t if it’s you, if it’s Tom Cruise, if it’s Jenna Elfman, you’re all going to get the same story from me,’” she recounted.
Although Cruise and the church weren’t happy that’d she hadn’t been able to sway Moonves, Remini wasn’t surprised he’d stood firm on the segment.
“They just weren’t happy that I couldn’t squash the story. I said, ‘I’m just a f—ing actress on television and I can’t demand that my boss take a f—ing report off the air,’ ” she said.
Remini, who was a Scientologist for 30 years, split very publicly with the church in 2013. Since then she’s been an outspoken critic of it and its leaders, in interviews, a memoir and now in her new A&E docu-series. The Church of Scientology has responded in kind, questioning her motives time and time again.
Despite efforts from the church to make it seem that she is simply trying to settle old scores, the actress says that her main focus is sharing what she feels to be the truth about Scientology and its controversial leader, David Miscavige.
Representatives for the Church of Scientology did not respond to a request for comment.
The first episode of “Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath,” an eight-part series, premiered on A&E on Tuesday night.
This article originally appeared in the New York Post.