The Bitter Feud Between Scientology Alpha Males Tom Cruise And John Travolta
The guarded nature of Scientology lends itself to wild rumors about what goes on in the church. Accounts from former Sea Org members and harrowing escape stories from Scientology abound, and they are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the outlandish stories of L. Ron Hubbard's religion.
Brendan Tighe, a lifelong member of the church, unceremoniously cut ties with the organization in 2011. In 2018, he gave a few interviews where he provided insight into the long-rumored Tom Cruise John Travolta feud.
Despite being little more than unsubstantiated rumors, Tighe’s claims come from an almost decade-long run as a member of Tom Cruise’s Florida security team. Tighe’s stories about Tom Cruise and John Travolta cover how the stars handle themselves within the church and how Travolta feels about Cruise receiving so much attention from the church’s leader, David Miscavige.
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Travolta Was Supposedly Jealous When Cruise Was Awarded The Freedom Medal Of Valor
Even though Cruise is the biggest celebrity Scientologist to outsiders, Brendan Tighe says Cruise was on the same level as other stars like Travolta and Kirstie Alley when he was at church functions. That changed when Cruise was awarded the Freedom Medal of Valor in 2008 by Chairman of the Board of Scientology David Miscavige.
Tighe told the Daily Mail the award made Travolta so "jealous" that he dictated an angry letter to Miscavige. Tighe continued, "When Cruise got that medal, Travolta was so pissed off."
- Photo: Guillaume P. Boppe / flickr / CC-BY-NC-ND 2.0
Tighe Alleges Travolta Feels His Position Was Usurped By Cruise
Brendan Tighe insinuates Travolta feels like Cruise pulled the rug out from under him, replacing him as the golden boy of Scientology. Tighe says at one point, Miscavige considered Travolta to be the "most dedicated Scientologist" who had "introduced more members than anyone." When Cruise received the Freedom Medal of Valor, it was like Travolta was "getting his title stripped."
Travolta Seemingly Doesn't See Cruise As His Superior
Despite Cruise's Freedom Medal of Valor and the alleged never-ending supply of free stuff coming his way from David Miscavige, Brendan Tighe says Travolta sees himself on the same playing field as the Mission Impossible star.
Tighe told the Daily Mail, "I can assure you Travolta doesn't recognize Cruise as a superior in any way." It's unclear whether this is because Travolta was both famous and a part of Scientology before Cruise, or if he's received assurances from higher-ups in the church.
Tighe Says Travolta Is Jealous Of Cruise's Preferential Treatment
Something Brendan Tighe makes clear multiple times in his interviews on the subject of the split between Travolta and Cruise is that the Pulp Fiction star is a bit jealous of all the cool stuff Cruise receives by virtue of being Cruise.
Tighe told the Daily Mail, "Travolta doesn't get anything free, no one is giving him absurd gifts like an airplane hangar, custom-made bikes, or over the top favors." Freebies are well and good, but it seems as if Travolta would feel better if he simply received the same level of respect that Cruise receives, at least by Tighe's logic.
- Photo: Scientology Media / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0
Cruise Reportedly Has A Direct Line To David Miscavige
It's likely that one of the major impasses between Travolta and Cruise is Cruise's direct connection to David Miscavige, a coveted, exclusive bond in the Scientology community. Brendan Tighe explained to the Daily Mail that it takes more than a big bank account and an A-list status to get in touch with the leader of Scientology:
Cruise is the only celeb with a direct line to Miscavige. Travolta and Kirstie [Alley] don't have that.
- Photo: Sharon Graphics / Flickr / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
Cruise Didn't Invite Travolta To His Wedding
Gossip columns and Scientologists alike quickly noticed back in 2006 that Cruise failed to invite Travolta to his wedding to Katie Holmes. Normally, it wouldn't be a big deal if a celebrity didn't invite another celebrity to their wedding, but when they're both figureheads of the same religious entity, the snub is quite apparent.
Speaking with the Daily Mail, Brendan Tighe said he knew the two stars had a visceral hate for each other when Travolta didn't receive a save the date. He said, "[When] Travolta wasn't invited to Cruise's wedding with Katie Holmes, it told me everything."