Leah Remini desperately wants to take down the Church of Scientology — and its most high-profile members.
In her Emmy Award–winning A&E docuseries, Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath, the actress turned investigative reporter paired up with the church’s former Australian senior executive Mike Rinder to expose the controversial organization’s secrets. “I will not let s–t go,” admits Remini, who cut ties with the church in 2013 after nearly 34 years. “If I find some untruth or a half truth or an omitted truth, I f–king find it.”
The church has been less than thrilled with her discoveries. After the 47-year-old Kevin Can Wait star first exited, “the response was pretty quiet,” Tony Ortega, the Scientology blogger behind The Underground Bunker, reveals in the new issue of Us Weekly. “They didn’t attack her. It was one statement about her being a diva or something.”
That changed when she began digging into the group’s murky backstory. When she announced a second season “the gloves came off,” reveals Ortega. “They went crazy, smearing her online. They had P.I.s dig up dirt, they got her biological father to record a video smearing her.” (In a statement to Us, a church spokesperson says that “Remini has conducted a campaign of hate and bigotry against a worldwide religion.”)
For Remini, wed to Angelo Pagan, coping has been tough. “It hurts, but she’s strong,” explains Ortega. “She hasn’t lost her focus on the end goal of exposing the church.”
And she’s ready to extend her quest into season 3. “There are still stories to be told,” says a Remini pal. “There’s nothing that ever leads her to shy away from continuing to fight.”
For more on Remini’s fight to expose the dark truths of the controversial religion — including her crusade to take down its most famed member, Tom Cruise — pick up the new issue of Us Weekly, on newsstands now.