Weinstein Co. Adds Extra Security For Scientology-Inspired Film Premiere After Angry Calls From Church Members

The Master, Philip Seymour Hoffman

The Church of Scientology is not pleased with “The Master.” The Weinstein Company’s upcoming film loosely follows the life of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard and the origins of fictional group “The Cause” with Philip Seymour Hoffman and Joaquin Phoenix in leading roles.  

Since news of the film, the church has been calling, emailing, and sending letters to the studio objecting the film’s depiction of the cult leader, according to The Hollywood Reporter

Seymour is said to play a loose characterization of the church founder while Phoenix character joins the group as his right-hand man after returning from home from World War II. 

As a result, The Weinstein Company heightened security for its Monday premiere in New York City. 

Why aren’t they happy with the film? Here are a few details from the film: 

  • It loosely explores the origins of Scientology. 
  • Scientologists are supposedly upset with Hoffman’s portrayal of the group’s founder, who’s said to be loosely based off of Church founder L. Ron Hubbard. 
  • Phoenix character is described as “falling under” the group leader’s “spell.” 
  • Phoenix’s character begins questioning the group’s belief system and head as “The Cause” grows in popularity. 

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