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Stephen Colbert: Do you believe Scientology is a religion at all? Leah Remini: No

Oh my, what an appearance Leah Remini made last night on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert to promote next week’s premiere of A&E’s ‘Scientology and the Aftermath’ season two.

We thought you’d want to go through it with a fine-tooth comb, so we’ve put together a transcript for you to comment on today. If you remember the character Colbert played on his Comedy Central show, he had a great ability to pretend that he had a particular point of view in order to make a larger point. Keep that in mind as you watch this interview. If you know Colbert’s history with Scientology, you know that he’s doing his best to pretend that he has to have Leah convince him that Scientology is not just like other “religions.” She does a pretty good job handling it, particularly when she compares Scientology to George Orwell’s “1984.”



Colbert: My next guest starred for nine years on ‘King of Queens,’ she’s now created a documentary series covering her fallout with the Church of Scientology. Please welcome Leah Remini.

[Band intro]

Colbert: That’s a beautiful dress.

Remini: You’re such a gentleman.

Colbert: Am I? How so.

Remini: You walked me, you held my hand the whole way. Very nice.

Colbert: Well, of course, you have the high heels.

Remini: Your wife —

Colbert: I don’t want you to snap an ankle. We got insurance —

Remini: That doesn’t mean anything.

Colbert: It doesn’t?

Remini: No.

Colbert: It doesn’t mean anything?


Remini: Your wife taught you well.

Colbert: She did.

Remini: That was my point.

Colbert: You know my wife actually said never sit before your female guest sits. Remember, it’s just like you’re in public.

Remini: See?

Colbert: Don’t ever, don’t ever do that.

Remini: So was I not wrong, that she trained you?

Colbert: No…

Remini: See how good I was so perceptive…

Colbert: If you’re saying something positive about my wife, you’re never wrong. All right?

Remini: And now you won’t get laid for saying that.

Colbert: Well, we’ll see. Well, listen. Hey, congratulations, you got two Emmy nominations for this documentary series you’re doing for A&E, for season one, ‘Scientology and the Aftermath,’ Leah Remini. Now, um, this is your first Emmy nomination, right?

Remini: Yes!

Colbert: That’s amazing. I can’t believe…


Remini: Isn’t that crazy?

Colbert: …after all these years, this is your first one. You didn’t get one…

Remini: No.

Colbert: …for playing the hot wife of the doughy guy all those years?

Remini: No! The funny guy. No, I…and I love his dough. I mean…

Colbert: Of course! Now, let’s talk about the, season two of ‘Scientology and the Aftermath’ starts Tuesday, August 15 here on the A&E. You were in the Church of Scientology for 35 years. Is the church cool with you doing this documentary?

Remini: No.

Colbert: No, they’re not. Were you surprised how uncool they are with it?

Remini: Well, I was, I knew the policies of Scientology. Scientology has policies that, you know the writings of L. Ron Hubbard that’s followed to a ‘T’ unlike, you know, real religion…

Colbert: What’s beyond ‘Dianetics’? There’s ‘Dianetics’ and what beyond ‘Dianetics’ are the writings?

Remini: Everything in Scientology is written down.

Colbert: The ‘tech’?

Remini: The ‘technology,’ you’re sweet.

Colbert: Yeah.


Remini: You’re good.

Colbert: I love the terminology.

Remini: Yes! I know you do.

Colbert: ‘KSW,’ I take that very seriously.

Remini: What does that mean?

Colbert: ‘Keeping Scientology Working.’

Remini: You almost flubbed it, but yes, that’s true. That’s right.

Colbert: That’s why I’m only OT level one, that’s why. What OT level did you reach?

Remini: Five.

Colbert: OK, is that good?

Remini: Yes.

Colbert: OK, what does that, how —

Remini: Well, it meant that I had cleared all of my beings that are attached to my body…

Colbert: Yeah?


Remini: …from sickness. That I cured myself of all illness.

Colbert: And did that actually work? Did you cure yourself of all illness? Did you get ill?

Remini: No.

Colbert: You did not get ill.

Remini: Well I, yes, we all get ill.

Colbert: Did you get ill less than other people?

Remini: No, but you believe it. But you believe that you are.

Colbert: Was there a value for that?

Remini: Not for that. But in the beginning, you know, Scientology teaches very basic morals and concepts, but, it teaches you things, how to do your finances, how to communicate better — not that I achieved that, clearly. But it’s a small, it starts very slowly and of course there are things in the beginning that are helpful, but as you go and as you get further and further indoctrinated you can’t get out without huge damage to yourself and to your family. And if you decide to leave and speak out, as most do, their policies say to attack.

Colbert: Do you believe it’s a religion at all?

Remini: No.

Colbert: Why not? Because, a system of thought, even if it’s destructive, in some people’s eyes if it’s destructive, how is that less of a religion then, I don’t know, my belief in angels.

Remini: You can choose to believe or not believe in angels. And also, Scientology is a business. It’s a, you have to pay before you go up the chart of Scientology, and by the end of this Scientology ‘Bridge,’ you’re in it a half a million dollars.

Colbert: How long have you been out of the Church of Scientology?


Remini: Well, I’ve been out for about five years.

Colbert: OK. Are you shopping for a new religion?

Remini: I’m not shopping.

Colbert: You’re not?

Remini: But again I have an issue with calling it “another religion.”

Colbert: OK. Are you searching for a religion right now? Could I interest you —

Remini: I’ve always been Cath — listen, I’ve always been…

Colbert: You’ve always been Catholic?

Remini: I was baptized a Catholic. And I baptized my daughter a Catholic.

Colbert: And can you be a Catholic and a Scientologist at the same time?

Remini: No, although they promote that you can. That is a lie. They don’t actually, when you get up to the confidential levels of Scientology that cost, again, hundreds of thousands of dollars, you find out that God is a lie, to Scientologists. But they don’t say that —

Colbert: What do you mean by that…

Remini: They say God is a lie. There is no such thing as God.

Colbert: Then what are you actually, where is the ‘tech’ coming from?

Remini: The tech is coming from L. Ron Hubbard.

Colbert: And is he dead?

Remini: In Scientologists’s mind, he is, his body is dead.

Colbert: And where is the rest?

Remini: He’s…

Colbert: I don’t mean to be, because again, angels. But like where is —

Remini: Well, no, don’t continue to put yourself in the same category, because it’s very different. You —

Colbert: Maybe.

Remini: Have you seen ‘1984’?

Colbert: Yeah.

Remini: OK, would you call that a religion?

Colbert: Uh, no, that’s a, that’s a fascist regime that crushes the face of a man forever underneath a hobnailed boot. That’s what it’s described as, yeah.

Remini: Exactly.

Colbert: Oh, OK. So, um…

Remini: I mean, the stories that we tell are of people’s real pain. These are not people going on our program to gain notoriety or fame, these are people going up there, appearing on our show knowing that they’re going to be shunned and attacked. Within hours of our show airing, people have hate-websites built on them from Scientology. Do you know of another religious organization that does that?

Colbert: Am I going to have a hate website on me…

Remini: Well I don’t know…

Colbert: …for having you on?

Remini: Well, a little bit. You’re toeing the line a little bit.

Colbert: What do you mean ‘toeing the line.’

Remini: Well, because your like saying, ‘Well, is it like other faiths, is it like other…’ you know, so you could be like, kind of forgiven, but unless you make like an actual statement…

Colbert: Well, what kind of statement. What do I have to say? Uh, you’re also…next year, this is very exciting, next season you’re back with Kevin James…

Remini: Yes.

Colbert: …on ‘Kevin Can Wait.’

Remini: Yes.

Colbert: Doing what? I mean, again, they’re going to go, why is the pretty girl with the…

Remini: No! I was, I played last season, at the end of his first season I played his ex-partner, we were cops together, we were detectives together. So I just come back as that character.

Colbert: And you came on for a couple of episodes last year and people loved it, why not Leah Remini, why not her?

Remini: I love that. It’s an amazing feeling.

Colbert: Do you ever think, because the people in your former not-a-faith as you say, there are so many in Hollywood, is there a fear about leaving Scientology that you won’t work again?

Remini: No, I felt it was just the opposite. That I always felt there was something about me that people were scared of because I was in the organization, and as a matter of fact, when I left and I was close to people in the business, they would say, ‘I never understood’ — when they felt comfortable enough — ‘how you were in this cult, how somebody so not-cultish would want to…’ They never really understood how I could be in it. But I was in it as a child. A lot of these people were brought in as children and they didn’t really have a choice. So no, I feel just the opposite, I feel I’ve been embraced by Hollywood, I’ve been embraced by our audience, and so have our contributors, and for that we are so grateful.

Colbert: Well, lovely to meet you, thank you so much for being here. Season two of ‘Scientology and the Aftermath’ premieres next Tuesday on A&E, and she’ll be back this fall on ‘Kevin Can Wait,’ Leah Remini, everybody.


Jeffrey Augustine interviews Janis Gillham Grady, part 3

Jeff says: “We discuss how Janis’ mother Yvonne Gillham Jentzsch founded the Celebrity Centre and became its first Commanding Officer. Yvonne was forced out in a power struggle with the Guardian’s Office after which she died a horrible death and received no medical treatment for her three brain tumors. Janis was ordered sec-checked by LRH several months after he mother died and then sent to the RPF. The cruelty and insanity of life at the top of Scientology where she personally worked for L. Ron Hubbard become evident.”



Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley has not seen his daughter Stephanie in 4,836 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 1,819 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 2,593 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 1,939 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 2,433 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 1,473 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy in 1,185 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 711 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 4,800 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 1,940 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 2,260 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 2,235 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 591 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin in 4,893 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 1,000 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis for 1,402 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 1,275 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 856 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike in 1,361 days.
Mary Jane Sterne has not seen her daughter Samantha in 1,605 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 12,714 days.


3D-UnbreakablePosted by Tony Ortega on August 8, 2017 at 07:00

E-mail tips and story ideas to tonyo94 AT gmail DOT com or follow us on Twitter. We post behind-the-scenes updates at our Facebook author page. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.

Our book, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely: How the Church of Scientology tried to destroy Paulette Cooper, is on sale at Amazon in paperback, Kindle, and audiobook versions. We’ve posted photographs of Paulette and scenes from her life at a separate location. Reader Sookie put together a complete index. More information can also be found at the book’s dedicated page.

The Best of the Underground Bunker, 1995-2016 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Undergound Bunker (2012-2016), The Village Voice (2008-2012), New Times Los Angeles (1999-2002) and the Phoenix New Times (1995-1999)

Learn about Scientology with our numerous series with experts…

BLOGGING DIANETICS: We read Scientology’s founding text cover to cover with the help of L.A. attorney and former church member Vance Woodward
UP THE BRIDGE: Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists
GETTING OUR ETHICS IN: Jefferson Hawkins explains Scientology’s system of justice
SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING: Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts

Other links: Shelly Miscavige, ten years gone | The Lisa McPherson story told in real time | The Cathriona White stories | The Leah Remini ‘Knowledge Reports’ | Hear audio of a Scientology excommunication | Scientology’s little day care of horrors | Whatever happened to Steve Fishman? | Felony charges for Scientology’s drug rehab scam | Why Scientology digs bomb-proof vaults in the desert | PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | Scientology’s Private Dancer | The mystery of the richest Scientologist and his wayward sons | Scientology’s shocking mistreatment of the mentally ill | Scientology boasts about assistance from Google | The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ

Our Guide to Alex Gibney’s film ‘Going Clear,’ and our pages about its principal figures…
Jason Beghe | Tom DeVocht | Sara Goldberg | Paul Haggis | Mark “Marty” Rathbun | Mike Rinder | Spanky Taylor | Hana Whitfield


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