My first thought after watching HBO's Scientology-crucifying documentary Going Clear was "Wow. Paul Haggis seems like such an affable, enlightening conversationalist. I wouldn't mind grabbing a cup of coffee with him sometime." My second thought was "Wow. Scientology is such an egregiously destructive waste of time, money, energy, intellect, and otherwise valuable creativity," et al.
Though Haggis left the church back in 2009, the minions of perpetual fashion-failure L. Ron Hubbard aren't quite finished with the Oscar-winning filmmaker. According to Haggis, a Church of Scientology spy recently posed as a reporter from Time magazine in order to garner some one-on-one time under the guise of an interview. On April 7th, Haggis received the following email (transcript via THR):
Dear Mr. Haggis,
I am writing a piece for Time Magazine on the 'golden age' of film. - I would very much like to interview you for the piece and include "Crash" as a example of recent film that has that beautiful cinematic 'touch'.
Other directors participating in the film include David Lynch, Jean-Luc Godard, Francis-Ford Coppola, Sam Mendes, Darren Arronofsky and David Fincher.
This can be done over the phone or via email. My deadline for the piece is April 15th, 4pm EST.
Thank you for your time and I look forward to hearing from you.
After forwarding the email to his staff, Haggis was informed that not only did a "Mark Webber" not work at Time, but the e-mail was sent from a computer at the Anthony Building in Los Angeles — owned by the Church of Scientology. Haggis swiftly informed The Underground Bunker of the Church's clumsy attempt at reconnection, giving his theories on why the Church would make any efforts to contact him at all. According to Haggis, he knows of many Scientologists (presumably current and former) who have been "lured to an office under false pretenses " and then locked inside for a truly rigorous interrogation session.
“There is no one named Mark Webber at that address, there is no such IP address at the Anthony Building on Fountain Avenue, it does not exist. The entire story is fabricated. A quick internet search does find a Mark Webber, a movie curator and writer who lives in England. Maybe it’s him. May be he emailed Haggis. Who knows? The Church knows nothing about this.”
Hey, Church. You should hire a more competent spokesperson. The punctuation and general tone of that press release are absolute trash.