Millions tuned in last night for the 2018 Super Bowl game between the Philadelphia Eagles and the New England Patriots, but many people weren't happy about a particular ad that was aired during the game. Fans who saw the show would probably remember a 30-second commercial by the Church of Scientology aimed at "curious" people wanting to know more about the religion.
Leah Remini, a former Scientology member, immediately dissed the commercial. The 47-year-old actress and host took to Twitter to express her disgust. She stated that Scientology is a "for-profit company," not a tax-exempt religion.
"Yet again Scientology spends millions to buy Super Bowl ads," Leah Remini tweeted.
"Scientology continues to behave as a for-profit company rather than a tax-exempt religion. #NotCurious."Aside from the actual game and half-time show, the Super Bowl is famous for its advertisements. Every year, mega companies compete for slots which go for millions of dollars. According to Sporting News, a 30-second ad like the Church of Scientology's costs around a whopping $5 million.
This isn't the first time for the controversial religion to buy a spot at the Super Bowl. In fact, this is the sixth straight year that Scientology has aired a promotional video in the football championship game, the New York Daily News reported.Scientology's Super Bowl ad last night had a more informative slant. It opened with the shot of a Google search about Scientology. It then went on to show quick shots of the church's buildings, members, and logo.
"Curious? We thought so," the closing text reads, flashing their website address at the end for a good five seconds.
Leah Remini is not alone in criticizing the Church of Scientology for its latest Super Bowl ad. Over the years, Scientology has faced controversies over its secretive ways, uncommon doctrines, and alleged abuses. Netizens quickly jumped in on Leah's tweet and questioned why NBC even allowed the church to air a commercial."Scientology took all the money they scam from poor, vulnerable people and spent it on a Super Bowl ad [to] try to convince people they're totally normal. What a way to spend your tithes," one viewer wrote on Twitter.
"Hey Scientology. A Super Bowl ad is not going to save your crazy a**," another one tweeted.
Leah Remini is known for actively campaigning against her former church. After she left Scientology in 2013, the actress wrote Troublemaker: Surviving Hollywood and Scientology, a memoir detailing her experiences in the shrouded religion which she described as a cult. Currently, Leah hosts Scientology and the Aftermath, a documentary series that exposes chilling allegations of abuse within Scientology as told by other former members.
In a previous statement, the Church of Scientology has denied Leah Remini's claims, People reported. The religious organization called Leah "self-absorbed" and dismissed her tell-all book as a mere "publicity stunt."
"It comes as no surprise that someone as self-absorbed as Leah Remini with an insatiable craving for attention would exploit her former faith as a publicity stunt."