Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Beliefis a 2015 documentary film about Scientology . Directed by Alex Gibney , it is based on Lawrence Wright 's bookGoing Clear: Scientology, Hollywood and the Prison of Belief(2013). Produced by HBO , the film premiered at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah . It has been nominated for seven Emmy Awards .
The film received widespread praise from critics for its deconstruction of the church's claims through a combination of presenting a condensed history of Scientology and its founder, L. Ron Hubbard , how celebrities interact with the church, the stories of a number of ex-members, and the abuse and exploitation the ex-members described seeing and experiencing. The Church of Scientology responded vehemently to the film, complaining to film critics about their reviews and denouncing the filmmakers and their interviewees.
Going Clearwas released in a limited number of theaters on March 13, 2015 and aired on HBO on March 29, 2015. It was a major ratings success and by mid-April 2015 had attracted 5.5 million viewers, making it the second most-watched HBO documentary in the past decade. It was subsequently released internationally, showing in theaters and on television despite a sustained campaign by the Church of Scientology to block its release.
Paul Haggis , the Oscar-winning director; Mark Rathbun , the church's former second-in-command; Mike Rinder , the former head of the church's Office of Special Affairs ; the actor Jason Beghe ; Sylvia 'Spanky' Taylor, former liaison to John Travolta ; and former Scientologists Tom DeVocht, Sara Goldberg, and Hana Eltringham Whitfield.
L. Ron Hubbard , and in the final act, the film airs allegations of the abuse of church members and misconduct by its leadership, particularly David Miscavige , who is accused of intimidating, beating, imprisoning, and exploiting subordinates. It highlights the role played by celebrity members, such as John Travolta and Tom Cruise , through the use of video clips contrasting their statements on Scientology with the experiences of former Scientologists.
One Scientologist was said to have been forced to clean a bathroom with his tongue.According to the film, the actress Nicole Kidman was targeted for wiretapping by Scientology in an effort to break up her marriage with Tom Cruise after she was labeled a "potential trouble source" by the church.It also asserts that John Travolta has been forced to stay in the church out of fear that his personal life will be exposed.