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Scientology Sunday Funnies: When David Miscavige Made RTC Look Like The Matrix

MatrixSmallWe have another Underground Bunker exclusive this morning, and it’s fun!

We’ve learned that in 2005, Scientology leader David Miscavige asked his personal tailor, Claudio Lugli, to dress up everyone at the Religious Technology Center like they were from the 1999 film The Matrix.

RTC is the controlling entity of Scientology, the inner sanctum of power among an alphabet soup of organizations with names like CSI, ASI, and CST. It’s RTC that really wields the power in the church, and its chairman of the board is David Miscavige (hence his title, COB).

As we learned in stories like our piece on John Broussau, the executives in RTC hold themselves apart and above the rest. (Brousseau learned the hard way, for example, what happens when an RTC employee is married to someone from a lesser Scientology outfit.)

Claudio and his wife Renata Lugli were longtime Scientologists who had provided fine clothes to Miscavige and his wife Shelly for many years. We recently posted photos of Shelly that had her showing off clothes the Luglis made for her. (See our previous story explaining what happened to Shelly, who hasn’t been seen in public since 2007.)

In 2005, Claudio was sent sketches of how Miscavige wanted his RTC employees to look — like they were straight out of The Matrix.

Claudio and Renata Lugli

Claudio and Renata Lugli

“Shelly came up with the idea and Urd Priester made the sketches,” Claudio tells us. “Renata and I were in close touch at the time with Shelly and Dave since we had been making their personal uniforms and casual or civil clothes for years. When they asked us if we could make uniforms for RTC, we had already done Celebrity Centre International and ABLE International prior to that. But RTC was really challenging — they wanted ‘Italian style’ and fitting. Based on the designs, we selected fabrics, accessories, and embroideries. We made prototypes, did tests of durability, and did sizings and fittings. It was a very, very complex evolution.”

We can imagine why Miscavige is a big fan of the movie by the Wachowski siblings. The film’s notion that we’re blind to the truth of our grim situation living on a prison planet is straight out of Scientology’s worldview.

“I must say working with Urd was a pleasure; she was very efficient and competent and sweet,” Claudio tells us. “We met with her several times in Los Angeles, but in 2006 we met her for the last time. She was very thin, very pale, physically destroyed. She said she was being moved to Gold Costumes.” In other words, she was being busted down to making clothes for the base’s video productions.

“We ended up with all the prototypes done and ready for final approval and waited for the production launch. Inside RTC there was a special unit, considered David Miscavige’s office, and for this office we had to do different outfits and very special ones. The unit consisted of about 10 people, including DM. RTC at the time was composed of about 100 staff, and plans were to reach 200 in the very near future and that was the production goal.”

Claudio says production for the larger staff never happened, as far as he knows. And after 2009, when news about the horrific treatment of executives in the base’s office prison, “The Hole,” surfaced in the press, expansion plans for RTC were canceled and since then the population at the base has greatly diminished. (Urd Priester turned out to be one of the executives who was seen being held in The Hole.)

Although those grand plans to have 200 people decked out like Neo apparently fell through, Miscavige’s inner staff did wear the outfits that the Luglis made for them. But Claudio says for some reason the sunglasses were switched out for Oakleys based on Tom Cruise’s Mission Impossible movies.

The Matrix meets Mission Impossible meets Miscavige, what a mix,” Claudio says.

Here are the designs Claudio was working from, which have never been published before. We put together three sets of outfits for men and women.




Claudio wanted to make it clear that he and Renata had nothing to do with the awful “vampire” line of clothes for Scientology staff which showed up around 2009 and was designed by Project Runway judge Richard Tyler.

Claudio and Renata by then were having second thoughts about Miscavige and the church. They left it in 2010, declared their independence, and now counsel other former church members in their home in Brescia, Italy. Their son Tiziano is well known to readers here, and they have an older son who remains in Scientology’s Sea Org and who has “disconnected” from them.

And now for the rest of our Sunday Funnies, when we reveal the mailers and fliers that our tipsters forwarded to us during the week.

Says our tipster about this next flier: “Since the addition of Quinn Taufer and crew, the Valley Ideal Org group has been going like gangbusters. They send out 6 to 10 e-mails a day to us clams and extol the many gains that will come our way when the Valley Ideal Org opens. It is downright inspiring. Flies into the teeth of what the commenters at your blog are reporting. Just look at the graphs below.”


Well, it certainly does seem like there’s been a big emphasis on renovating the new org in the San Fernando Valley. And judging by this next flier, it looks like they have quite a bit of fundraising to go…


But this next mailer suggests that the Valley is pulling ahead of the rest!


Meanwhile, it looks like this event last night in Dallas was all kinds of shit-kicking fun!


This Bay Area flier has us wondering why the church doesn’t have more fun with Tom Cruise movies. He’s their biggest draw!


And finally, we thought this new description of OT VIII might be worth parsing. Give us your thoughts on how the ultimate level of Scientology enlightenment is being sold…


Hey, Karen de la Carriere has yet another video out, this time about the elusive state of “Clear” in Scientology…


Thanks again to our great tipsters. Keep those mailers and fliers coming!


Posted by Tony Ortega on June 16, 2013 at 08:00

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