Jada Pinkett Smith and Leah Remini put everything on the table on Monday’s episode of Pinkett Smith’s Facebook Watch series, Red Table Talk, in which they candidly discussed their very public disagreement over Scientology.
The drama first enfolded when Remini wrote in her 2015 book, Troublemaker: Surviving Hollywood and Scientology, that Tom Cruise — the controversial religion’s most famous face — once wanted to play a bizarre game of adult hide and seek with his friends at his Los Angeles home, which included Pinkett Smith and her husband, Will Smith. Pinkett Smith later downplayed the incident when asked about it during an appearance on Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen. At the time, Pinkett Smith said Remini made the incident sound weirder than what it was, and that the game was actually the guests goofing off with their kids.
“I have studied Dianetics, and appreciate the merits of Study Tech… but I am not a Scientologist,” she tweeted at the time. “I practice human kindness, and I believe that we each have the right to determine what we are and what we are not. NO ONE ELSE can hold that power.”
During the two actresses’ chat on Monday, Remini — who famously left the religion in 2013 and has been an outspoken critic since — said that when she watched Pinkett Smith on Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen, she believed Scientology sent out Pinkett Smith to discredit her.
“What I do know for a fact is, you didn’t really know Leah 100 percent, because what we’re taught is to act a certain way around other celebrities,” Remini claims. “And when the thing happened on Bravo, I was floored. I was really, really like, ‘Wow. Jada’s — not only is she in Scientology but now they sent Jada out.'”
“Scientology has policies called, ‘Fair Game’ — and that’s to discredit and attack anyone who’s speaking out against the abuses of Scientology,” she continues. “I was like, oh my god. She’s even more in than I had thought. And I was wrong.”
Pinkett Smith quickly set the record straight, replying, “I want to apologize to you, because I never — just so you know — I wasn’t Fair Gaming you on Andy Cohen. I wasn’t Fair Gaming you.”
Pinkett Smith also clarified her involvement in Scientology, acknowledging that she took some courses at the church and was interested in Study Tech, one of the religion’s teaching methods. She also opened a school, which used the Study Tech, that shut down in 2013.
“This was just a big a** misunderstanding because you saw me at the Scientology Center,” she tells Remini. “Will and I are always being accused of being Scientologists, being this and being that… And the crazy thing is, if we walked into my library right now, like, I love religion, because I grew up in the Ethical Society. So, my grandmother was like, ‘You’re gonna learn all the religions, and then you gotta decide which one you wanna practice.'”
“So, for me, all religions have been my home,” she continues. “Which is why I didn’t have a problem going to the Church of Scientology and saying, ‘I’m not a Scientologist. I just want to be here and see what you have to offer,’ because that was my life. That’s what I’m used to. But I totally see with, in your shoes, your reality, how you could see me the way that you did.”
Remini tears up during their chat, admitting that she didn’t think about the awkward position she put the Smiths in when naming them in her book.
“I’m sorry that I didn’t consider you, because I didn’t,” Remini acknowledges. “I was just so caught up in that pain. And also, the pain of others and the effects that it had.”
“And I really, truly, deeply apologize,” she later says. “I should’ve thought about the names in the book. I should’ve thought about what that meant for you guys, and I didn’t.”
Remini was the one to actually reach out to Pinkett Smith after their public feud through their mutual friend, actor Duane Martin. The King of Queens star says she’s getting better at showing her softer side by undergoing therapy.
“And that’s what I’m starting to learn: ‘You don’t need to fight every fight, Leah,’ because I have not had third seasons of shows, because I was climbing over a table in a boardroom going, ‘I will punch you in your… I don’t give a s**t about the show,’ and I’m proud of that side of myself because I don’t put up with bulls**t in this business,” she says. “But, I was — I said, I don’t actually like that side of me. I like the intention behind it, but I don’t like the way I’m coming at it, like a fighter. I don’t mind being it — but not in a damn business meeting.”
For more on the ladies’ chat, watch the video below: