The one disconnect I’ve had with director-writer Paul Haggis (In The Valley of Elah, Crash, Million Dollar Baby) all these years was his being a member of the Church of Scientology. I presume I don’t have to explain the odious aspects of such a relationship. But being a major fan of Elah and the MDB script I didn’t want to contemplate it or go there, so I just pushed it aside.
Paul Haggis (l.); Church of Scientology lieutenant Tommy Davis
Now Hollywood Reporter columnist Roger Freidman has reported that Haggis has walked away from the Church of Scientology over two ethical issues — i.e., the church’s support of Proposition 8 (a.k.a. “Proposition Hate,” the California initiative banning gay marriage) and an order from the Scientology high command that Haggis’s wife Deborah Rennard had to sever all ties with her parents “because they’d violated some code of the sect,” Friedman explains.
Friedman has posted a letter Haggis wrote to Scientology “celebrity wrangler” Tommy Davis (i.e., the son of Scientologist Anne Archer), and is claiming that “the veracity of the letter has been confirmed by a friend of Haggis.”
I’ve read the letter twice and in my book Haggis is now a man of great courage and high honor. It takes balls to stand up to those vindictive mafiosos, those brain police, as they’re infamous for getting in your face and crawling up your ass. To go by Haggis’s letter, Davis sounds like a spineless hypocrite.
Haggis is currently filming The Next Three Days, a remake of Fred Cavaye‘s Pour Elle, about a professor (Russell Crowe) struggling to free his wrongfully imprisoned wife (Elizabeth Banks) from jail. Liam Neeson costars.