Since the explosive 2015 documentary Going Clear, public opinion on the Church of Scientology has vastly shifted. Many were troubled by what was depicted in the film, including details about megastar and practicing Scientologist Tom Cruise. Andy Cohen’s SiriusXM show revealed that Rosie O’Donnell worries over Tom Cruise’s Scientology involvement, having watched several documentaries about the church herself. In an interview on Radio Andy, O’Donnell expressed fears about how deeply Cruise is enmeshed, and what he may or may not know about the organization.
During her time as View cohost, O’Donnell repeatedly expressed fondness and admiration for Cruise. When a caller asked O’Donnell whether her opinion of the actor had changed given his religious beliefs, she answered as follows: “Since seeing all the documentaries, it does make me worry about him and his life, and think of, you know, how protected he is from the facts of that.”
The allegations put forth in documentaries on Scientology are certainly concerning, with fellow celebrity Leah Remini continuing her work to expose Scientology’s alleged secrets to this day. Given Cruise’s silence on these allegations, it’s easy to see why O’Donnell worries that he may not have the full scope of information. The alternative — that Cruise is aware of the activities alleged by Remini and others and does not condemn them — is harder to stomach.
O’Donnell goes on to say that, while she doesn’t quite have a soft spot for Scientology itself, she appreciates that Cruise doesn’t try to press his beliefs on others. “I’ve always had a little ick factor with Scientology,” she admits. “He’s never brought it up to me, we’ve never spoken about it, he keeps it very private. It’s not like he tries to convert people.” Remini, on the other hand, O’Donnell can’t praise highly enough of: “Leah Remini is like a superhero, honest to God, what she’s done to blow the lid off that Scientology,” she says. “There was time years ago when anyone who tried to make a documentary, they were sued and they were followed.”
Given the impression of the Church of Scientology, it’s hard to imagine O’Donnell not holding Cruise at least somewhat accountable for his silence on the subject. But we’ll take her word for it that she believes Cruise is simply “protected” from what the church is allegedly doing.