Tom Cruise & Scientology: How Much Does It Cost Him?

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Only 25,000 Americans consider themselves Scientologists, as reported by Fortune, and none are more famous than Mission Impossible actor Tom Cruise. Recent gossip has taken over the Internet about how he may leave the Church of Scientology in order to see his daughter Suri Cruise; however, it doesn't seem very likely. In addition to strained relationships, failed marriages, and a pretty extreme life commitment, Scientology has also cost Tom A LOT of money. 

  • Tom was introduced to the religion when he was only 23 and has since risen to one of its top members.

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    Tom was introduced to Scientology by his then-girlfriend, actress Mimi Rogers. According to the New York Post, he quickly became intrigued and began undergoing "auditing" -- a process much like a therapy session in which members are questioned about every aspect of their lives.

    The Church of Scientology follows a hierarchy system in which its members are separated (and treated differently) depending upon how they rank. According to Scientology.org:

    "Because Scientology scripture requires that its religious practices be ministered in an orthodox manner, the hierarchical structure helps ensure individual Churches receive the ecclesiastical support and guidance needed to do this. All Scientologists are thus assured of an orthodox religious observance in every Church around the world."

    Years later, Tom has become the third highest member of the religion, behind its founder, the late L. Ron Hubbard, and David Miscavige, the chairman of the board of the Religious Technology Center.
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  • According to Bankrate, Tom Cruise has a net worth of about $550 million -- but how much of that fortune goes toward his faith?

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    In 2016, actress and ex-Scientologist Leah Remini premiered her television series Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath. On the show she has been very transparent about the extreme financial obligation of Scientology. 

    According to Remini, it wouldn't be unusual for an individual to spend approximately $500,000 to reach the top tiers of Scientology. And seeing as how Tom has the money to spend and is one of the top leaders of the church, we're guessing he has spent well above that total. 

    As reported by Global News, all scientologists, regardless of rank, work their way through Dianetics studies and courses. Similar to a college structure, there are many books and classes that need to be paid for. 

  • The courses and books required by the religion are NOT cheap.

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    "Scientology consistently updates the course material, so even if you reach the top, chances are you're looking at additional courses and more spending," according to Global News. As members get higher in the Scientology church, they are expected to consistently take courses, which cost from $650 (for a beginner class) and quickly escalate into thousands per course. The "audits" cost about $800 per hour. And those Dianetics books? A package of the books costs about $4,000.

    "There is no other religion that I know of that requires two and a half hours of your day, a quarter of a million dollars minimum, and at least 40 years of your life," Leah said on her show last year.

  • And why is it that Tom never talks about such a consuming portion of his life? Because that would cost him too!

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    There is reportedly a whopping $100,000 fine any time someone reveals details about Scientology teachings and beliefs to anyone outside the organization. It's even punishable to tell your spouse, family, or lower ranked Scientologists.

  • So, where is all this money going?

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    The short answer is: No one knows. Its members shovel in all of this money on books and courses and fines and fees, yet it has not been disclosed where the money goes. 

    According to the 2015 documentary Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief, the church is worth billions of dollars AND is considered tax-exempt by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The IRS did previously fight against the church over this; however, it was declared a non-profit religious organization in 1993.

    According to Jeffrey Augustine, author of the blog The Scientology Money Project, the church has a book value of $1.75 billion, and about $1.5 billion of that is invested in real estate. He also estimates that the annual revenue collected by the church is about $200 million! 

  • And it seems like Tom's ongoing high-profile role in Scientology is affecting a lot more than just his pockets.

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    According to Leah Remini, Tom is not a good person -- in fact, she considers him "diabolical." Last year, Leah held a Reddit AMA and said:

    "There is a public persona of the guy who looks at you directly in the eye and shakes your hand and hugs you and is an attentive person to you and there's the person behind the mask who is a completely different person. Someone could say we all have that -- what we are to the public and who we are behind the scenes, but the people who are around Tom and work for Tom, not even people who are Scientologists, they will say he is diabolical. People who've worked with me will say I can be an a**hole -- all actors can be. That is different. He's very similar to David Miscavige, they could be twins."

  • His biggest "cost"? His estranged relationship with his 11-year-old daughter, Suri Cruise.

    tom cruise, katie holmes, suri cruise
    James Devaney/Getty Images.

    Tom has not been seen with his daughter Suri, whom he shares with ex-wife Katie Holmes, in years now. Katie and Suri reportedly have no contact with him, and it all circles back to his involvement with the church. 

    Previous rumors have also had folks speculating that the church was responsible for his past failed marriages to both Katie and Nicole Kidman -- which we don't really think is untrue. 

    It's obvious that Scientology is a demanding and costly church to be a part of in more ways than one. Hopefully one day Tom will be able to at least figure out his relationship with his youngest daughter. (Cruise and Kidman also share two adopted children, Connor and Isabella, who are both reportedly still part of the church.) As for his financial obligations ... well, if he wants to spend hundred of thousands, possibly millions, on Scientology, then we guess that's his prerogative.  

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