Tom Cruise lauds power of Scientology in Web video

Wed Jan 16, 2008 12:16pm EST
 
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By Michelle Nichols

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A video of actor Tom Cruise touting himself and fellow Scientologists as "authorities on the mind" has appeared on the Internet, coinciding with a new biography that examines his role in the movement.

The origin of the footage, which the Church of Scientology said was a video shown at a 2004 International Association of Scientologists meeting, was not clear. It popped up on several Web sites and some took it down after copyright claims by the church.

Cruise, shown wearing a black turtleneck sweater and speaking while the musical theme to his hit movie "Mission: Impossible" played in the background, said he was dedicated to changing people's lives.

"It's a privilege to call yourself a Scientologist and it's something that you have to earn," he said.

"We're the authorities on getting people off drugs. We're the authorities on the mind. We're the authorities on improving conditions," he says. "We can rehabilitate criminals. Way to happiness. We can bring peace and unite cultures."

In the video, which could be seen on www.gawker.com, Cruise explained what made Scientologists different from others.

"Being a Scientologist, when you drive past an accident it's not like anyone else. As you drive past you know you have to do something about it because you know you're the only one who can help," the Oscar-nominated actor said.

Cruise is one of the best-known Scientologists. The movement has a following among some Hollywood celebrities but is condemned as a cult in some quarters, including by the German government.   Continued...

 
<p>Tom Cruise looks on as actor Will Smith gets his hands and feet in cement at Grauman's Chinese Theatre in Los Angeles, December 10, 2007. A video of Cruise touting himself and fellow Scientologists as "authorities on the mind" has appeared on the Internet, coinciding with a new biography that examines his role in the movement. REUTERS/Chris Pizzello</p>