Leah Remini Claims Scientology Wanted Her To Convert ‘King Of Queens’ Co-Star Kevin James
Leah Remini is alleging that Scientologists asked her to convert her King of Queens co-star Kevin James before her very public split with the church in 2013.
Leah, who’s been very outspoken against the church since she cut all ties with the religion, claimed in a new interview that she was heavily pressured to get Kevin to convert from his Catholic beliefs to Scientology when they worked together on the sitcom between 1998 and 2007.
“They always tried to get me to [convert him],” the actress alleged to People of the actor, who played her husband in the show for nine years. She claimed that other members would ask her, “‘Why is he not in? Why have you not promoted it to him?'”
Leah said that she then told the church about her co-star’s Catholic faith and made it clear that he had told her that he “‘doesn’t want anything to do with it.'”
After supposedly repeatedly pressuring her to get him on board, she told the magazine that they eventually “let it go after a while” but claimed that they still expected her to bring more people to the church.
“Usually you’d be expected to recruit, especially with somebody you work with for nine years,” Leah said of being a member of the secretive religion, though People reported that a Scientology spokesperson has denied her latest claims.
Continuing to discuss her time with Scientology after writing a tell-all book and exposing the secrets of the religion in her A&E documentary series Leah Remini: Scientology and The Aftermath, she added that she now is “finally at peace knowing who I am and who I want to be.”
“I just want to be happy — and I want to help people,” Remini said of why she continues to speak out against the religion.
The actress cut all ties with Scientology and left the church four years ago after being a dedicated member for 30 years.
Leah’s allegations that she was expected to convert Kevin when they worked together on King of Queens – which aired it final episode in 2007 after nine seasons and more than 200 episodes – comes amid the news that the two will be reconciling full-time on his new comedy, Kevin Can Wait.
Variety confirmed earlier this month that Kevin’s wife in the show, played by actress Erinn Hayes, would not be returning and will actually be killed off when confirming that Leah had landed a more permanent role on the comedy.
“The character will have passed away and we will be moving forward in time catching up at a later date,” CBS programming boss Thom Sherman told the site.
He then denied that the CBS show was becoming a spin-off and King of Queens after Leah was upgraded to the role series regular after serving as a guest star in a few episodes during Season 1.
“I think the show speaks for itself and stands for itself,” he said when asked about the similarities between Kevin Can Wait and King of Queens. “Obviously the chemistry between Kevin and Leah was amazing in the stunt episode we did at the end of last season, and we decided we want to continue that.”
[Featured Image by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images]