Laura Prepon says she ditched Scientology 5 years ago, after practicing since ‘90s
Laura Prepon, known for “Orange Is the New Black” and “That ‘70s Show,” says she’s no longer practicing Scientology.
The move came nearly five years ago, the actor told People on Tuesday.
“I’ve always been very open-minded, even since I was a child,” she said. “I was raised Catholic and Jewish. I’ve prayed in churches, meditated in temples. I’ve studied Chinese meridian theory. I haven’t practiced Scientology in close to five years and it’s no longer part of my life.”
Prepon had a son with then-fiancé Ben Foster in 2017, and the actor couple married the next year. Though they dated only for a few months before getting engaged in 2016, they had known each other since Prepon was 18. They welcomed a daughter in 2020, and being the mother of those two children forced Prepon to look inward, she told the magazine.
Like most of Netflix’s biggest successes since, “Orange Is the New Black” was a word-of-mouth sensation that broke out despite having no stars.
“As a brand new mother, I was reflecting so much on my own upbringing and the way I was mothered,” the 41-year-old said. “I was forced to look at a lot of things in my life that I wasn’t looking at before.”
Despite rumors to the contrary, Foster has never practiced Scientology, the People story made clear.
“We meditate daily and I’m really liking it,” she said of her life with Foster, “because it’s something that helps me to hear my own voice and it’s something we can do together.” (Her husband was raised in Fairfield, Iowa, a town described as “America’s Transcendental Meditation Mecca.”)
Prepon was previously involved from 1999 to 2007 with “Malcolm in the Middle” actor Chris Masterson, who was raised a Scientologist. A year after they split, the couple sold a Los Feliz house they had co-owned.
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Chris Masterson is among the three brothers of “That ‘70s Show” actor Danny Masterson, a high-profile Scientologist who is facing a criminal trial in Los Angeles on three charges of rape. Tony Ortega, a well-known Scientology critic, said in June 2020 that it was Danny Masterson who brought Prepon into Scientology in the late 1990s, when they were both costarring on the Fox sitcom.
Church secrets spilled out during a preliminary hearing in the rape case, with one woman testifying that the church threatened to boot her if she went to authorities about her alleged assault by Danny Masterson and another saying she was told to sign a document “taking responsibility” for allegedly being raped while unconscious.
In civil court, the alleged victims are suing Danny Masterson, the Church of Scientology, its Religious Technology Center and Scientology leader David Miscavige. Church spokeswoman Karin Pouw told The Times in May that the civil lawsuit was “a sham” filled with “false and scandalous allegations about the church dating back more than 15 years.”
In statements to The Times, the church denied it has a policy to dissuade members from reporting crimes, despite repeated references to Scientology texts during the preliminary hearing that appeared to include the directive. Pouw also dismissed the criminal allegations against Masterson as “nothing more than a money shakedown.”
Times staff writers James Queally and Matthew Ormseth contributed to this post.
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