Friday, August 17, 2018
TV and Media

Leah Remini reveals why she left the Church of Scientology

Leah Remini is the latest actor to join the list of those willing to spill secrets about the Church of Scientology.

The King of Queens star has a tell-all memoir, Troublemaker: Surviving Hollywood and Scientology, coming out Tuesday. She also appears on ABC's 20/20 at 10 p.m. Friday.

Previews of her interview with ABC News' Dan Harris have already been released. In one, Remini, who was introduced to the church by her mother when she was 9, discusses how Scientology places a special importance on the role of children.

"Because Scientologists view children as spiritual beings, you're not treated as a kid," says Remini, 45. "You're given a lot of responsibility, your ego becomes extremely inflated."

She also explains how difficult it was for her to leave Scientology.

"The decision to leave is you are giving up everything you have ever known and everything you have worked for your whole life," she tells Harris. "I feel that people need to understand, this has been my whole life. I want them to understand how it happens."

Remini left Scientology in July 2013. She said her own daughter was also coming of age in the organization, and Remini said she didn't want that life for her.


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Church spokeswoman Karin Pouw told People magazine in a statement earlier this week that Remini's claims are an effort to drum up attention for herself.

"It comes as no surprise that someone as self-absorbed as Leah Remini with an insatiable craving for attention would exploit her former faith as a publicity stunt by rewriting her history with it," Pouw said, "including omitting that she was participating in a program to remain a Scientologist by her own choice, as she was on the verge of being expelled for her ethical lapses."

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