Leah Remini Says Tom Cruise’s COVID Rant Was ‘All for Publicity’

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Leah Remini took aim at Tom Cruise after his rant at crew members on the set of Mission: Impossible 7 made headlines earlier this week.

The Scientology and the Aftermath host, 50, claimed in a statement to the anti-Scientology website The Underground Bunker on Wednesday, December 16, that the Top Gun star’s angry outburst was “for public relations reasons only.”

Leah Remini Says Tom Cruise's COVID Outburst Was 'All for Publicity'
Leah Remini and Tom Cruise. Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP/Shutterstock; Invision/AP/Shutterstock

“Tom’s reaction that was released yesterday shows his true personality. He is an abusive person,” the King of Queens alum said of Cruise, who is a high-profile member of the Church of Scientology. “I witnessed it, I’ve been a recipient of it on a small level … This is the real Tom.”

“Tom does not care about the families of his crew; this is all for publicity,” Remini, a former Scientologist, continued. “Tom does not believe in family values. I mean, how anyone is falling for this is just mindblowing. I would bet that Tom had this rant written for him and had his Scientology assistant record and release it. Hearing a rich actor with enormous power address his crew in this way is a sign of weakness and a deeply troubled person. This is not just a rant of another a–hole actor. Tom Cruise pretending that he cares is why a few have called him out. They know this is a publicity stunt, they know what Tom really is and what Tom really believes.”

Cruise, 58, was caught on tape berating crewmembers after they violated COVID-19 protocols on the set of his movie, which resumed filming in Europe after being shut down due to coronavirus concerns earlier this year.

“They’re back there in Hollywood making movies right now because of us,” he said in the audio clip. “I’m on the phone with every f–king studio at night, insurance companies, producers. They are looking at us and using us to make their movies. We are creating thousands of jobs, you mother–kers.”

He then appeared to threaten the staff, saying, “If I see you do it again, you’re f–king gone. And if anyone on this crew does it, that’s it — and you too and you too. And you, don’t you ever f–king do it again. That’s it. No apologies. You can tell it to the people that are losing their f–king homes because our industry is shut down.”

Several stars including George Clooney, Hilarie Burton and Ricky Gervais expressed their support for Cruise, but Remini insists he was out of line.

“This is Tom friggin’ Cruise wielding his power and threatening and degrading his crew,” Remini said of his expletive-filled outburst.

“No one needs to be ‘addressed’ by Tom about safety codes. There are producers who could have and should have handled the situation privately and professionally. What more likely happened was, two crew members who were in the same zone were talking to each other and Tom saw this as an opportunity to appear as the epitome of strength; of a leader who is taking this pandemic very seriously,” the added. “This behavior is not normal or appropriate. No one can respond to his outburst without being fired.”

The Emmy-winning actress and producer then outlined some of the protocols being observed on film and TV sets.

“Crews are separated into groups and zones and are not allowed to step into zones they are not assigned to,” she explained. “All cast and crew are tested every other day, temperatures are taken every day upon arrival to set, new masks are given upon their arrival, anyone from out of town must stay in their hotels and are monitored, they are driven to set from those in their zones. They are not being monitored by Tom Cruise; they are being monitored by the COVID officers assigned to the movie. There are strict guidelines that are being required to be on set.”

“I only wish someone had stepped in and had done something about it,” she concluded of the three-time Oscar nominee’s tirade. “We have enough of the types who stand by and allow this kind of behavior to go on.”

Us Weekly has reached out to Cruise’s rep for comment.

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