Troublemaker: Surviving Hollywood and Scientology
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#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • The outspoken actress, talk show host, and reality television star offers up a no-holds-barred memoir, including an eye-opening insider account of her tumultuous and heart-wrenching thirty-year-plus association with the Church of Scientology.
Leah Remini has never been the type to hold her tongue. That willingness to speak her mind, stand her ground, and rattle the occasional cage has enabled this tough-talking girl from Brooklyn to forge an enduring and successful career in Hollywood. But being a troublemaker has come at a cost.
That was never more evident than in 2013, when Remini loudly and publicly broke with the Church of Scientology. Now, in this frank, funny, poignant memoir, the former King of Queens star opens up about that experience for the first time, revealing the in-depth details of her painful split with the church and its controversial practices.
Indoctrinated into the church as a child while living with her mother and sister in New York, Remini eventually moved to Los Angeles, where her dreams of becoming an actress and advancing Scientology’s causes grew increasingly intertwined. As an adult, she found the success she’d worked so hard for, and with it a prominent place in the hierarchy of celebrity Scientologists alongside people such as Tom Cruise, Scientology’s most high-profile adherent. Remini spent time directly with Cruise and was included among the guests at his 2006 wedding to Katie Holmes.
But when she began to raise questions about some of the church’s actions, she found herself a target. In the end, she was declared by the church to be a threat to their organization and therefore a “Suppressive Person,” and as a result, all of her fellow parishioners—including members of her own family—were told to disconnect from her. Forever.
Bold, brash, and bravely confessional, Troublemaker chronicles Leah Remini’s remarkable journey toward emotional and spiritual freedom, both for herself and for her family. This is a memoir designed to reveal the hard-won truths of a life lived honestly—from an author unafraid of the consequences.
Praise for Troublemaker
“An aggressively honest memoir . . . Troublemaker is the most raw and revealing Scientology memoir to date.”—Entertainment Weekly
“Leah’s story is a juicy, inside-Hollywood read, but it’s more than that. It’s a moving story about the value of questioning authority and how one woman survived a profound crisis of faith.”—People
“Remini [offers] up some juicy tidbits from her decades in the church.”—Newsweek
From the Hardcover edition.
in to Seinfeld every week. The network changed our time slot for the second season. With that, Fired Up lost its audience. Our last episode aired in February 1998. The death of that show represented yet another failure as an actress and as a Scientologist. At twenty-seven years old, I was having to go back to the drawing board once again. There were so many starts and stops in my career, ups and downs, moments of triumph and then heartbreak. It always felt like “This is it” and then it wasn’t.
there is no obvious connection to Queens, for which residents of the borough can be thankful.” So, yeah, we never really got too comfortable. At first it was “Let’s see if we can make it past the first thirteen episodes.” Then we prayed to get the last nine ordered to complete a full first season. Even then, most of us said, “Eh, we’ll see if we make it to Season Two.” The threat of cancellation always hanging over us actually had a positive side, though. Even if any of the cast had fights with
to, and perform the most demeaning and arduous manual labor with no days off. I had met David Miscavige a number of times at various events, after which a few of us would go meet in the President’s Office, the special area of the Celebrity Centre reserved for celebrities and VIPs. David, short, trim, and well built with blue eyes and light brown hair, had always treated me with respect, and I liked his wife, Shelly, a lot. She was tough and something of a rule breaker like me, but I also found
they knew about me and Mike Rinder. As I knew, it was all just to gain intel on me. On top of all this, Julian had spread the word that my family and I were under investigation, which made us look horrible to everyone in the church. People averted their eyes when we walked by and refused to acknowledge us. As a last effort to take us down, Julian threatened to take away all of my mom’s certs (credits earned, thus she would have to throw away thirty-plus years of training and start at the bottom
remained connected. My stepsons, Alex, Nico, and Angelito: You have grown into beautiful men, and I am blessed to have you in my life. The Pagáns: Coco, thank you for being the brother-in-law I always wanted. You make me laugh. Thank God, because your brother doesn’t. To my brother-in-law Mike Wiskow, thank you for putting up with my sister and our crazy family. My sisters, Elizabeth, Stephanie, Christina: You endured a lot. You are all fighters. Stephanie (R.I.P), our little firecracker—we