Chloe pre-fall lookbook collection
[Tommy Davis as Scientology mouthpiece; his new BFFs in Hollywood, James Packer and Mariah Carey]
In May, we broke the startling news that former Scientology spokesman Tommy Davis had started a new job: He’s working for Australian billionaire James Packer, who at one time was Scientology’s richest customer. According to his LinkedIn profile, Tommy started his new job in February as “general manager North America” for Packer’s investment firm, Consolidated Press Holdings. That position comes with a role helping to run Packer’s partnership with filmmaker Brett Ratner in their movie-funding business, RatPac Entertainment. After our story came out, we heard that Ratner was surprised to learn that Davis may still have some connection to Scientology. But new photos suggest that things have been smoothed over, and Davis is fitting in as a mover and shaker in Hollywood.
Researcher Garry Scarff spotted a photo of lookbook Tommy and his wife Jessica Feshbach taken Wednesday at Ratner’s home, and that sent us looking for more. Getty Images photographer Lester Cohen had a large collection of them posted that he took Wednesday night, and we’ve cropped and embedded a few images for you in the name of Fair Use.
Tommy Davis is still a fan favorite here at the Underground Bunker. He’s the handsome son of Academy Award-nominated actress and Scientologist Anne Archer, but he gave up his start at Columbia University to become a hard core “Sea Org” member and then spent the mid-2000s running errands for Tom Cruise and the rich Australian who Cruise had brought into the fold, Packer. All three of them were tight enough that tabloid photos of them emerged on Packer’s yacht showing Tommy (with his Sea Org tattoo) and Cruise with his new girlfriend, Katie Holmes.
Banished from the Sea Org, Tommy and Jessica settled into their new life. Jessica took out a realtor’s license and went to work for a local firm, while Tommy became majordomo to the wealthy Thomas Barrack Jr. at his real estate private equity firm headquartered in Santa Monica, Colony Capital. (Tommy’s father, the late William Davis, was a wealthy real estate investor.) Tommy and Jessica had their first child, a daughter, in October 2013. Tommy, in a deposition he gave in January 2014, claimed that he was just “on leave” from the Sea Org and was still a member of the Church of Scientology.
More recently, we got the big update. In 2014, Tommy and Jessica moved back to Los Angeles, they’ve now had a second daughter, and Davis dropped his Colony Capital job to go to work for Packer in February. Their new life appears to be agreeing with them; the good-looking couple were captured Wednesday night by Cohen at the Ratner shindig.
“You are shitting me,” former Scientology figure Marc Headley said when we told him the news. He reminded us that Doven is a notorious Scientology spy who was used by church leader David Miscavige for years to keep tabs on Tom Cruise. Doven had been Cruise’s personal assistant, and is a minor figure in filmmaking today. (A recent project, for example, was a movie about golf hustling, 2015’s The Squeeze, that was produced by Scientologists Anne Archer and her husband Terry Jastrow — who wrote and directed the film –and featured Scientologist actor Jason Dohring. Variety panned it as a “heavy handed morality play.”)
We confirmed with our sources inside the church that Doven is very much still the gung-ho church member he always was. And Headley is convinced that the only way Tommy Davis is palling around with Doven, introducing him to his new friends in Hollywood, is that Davis is on a mission from David Miscavige to convince Packer to come back into the fold.
It’s wealthy donors that have been propping up Scientology as the organization loses members, and Miscavige needs all the billionaires he can get. The church’s richest current member is Silicon Valley investor Bob Duggan, who is worth about.2 billion and has given at least million in donations to the church. Convincing Packer, who is worth.4 billion, to come back to Scientology would instantly make him the church’s richest member, and would be a major accomplishment for Davis — perhaps enough to get him back in the good graces of Miscavige.
But after our story in May came out, we heard rumblings that Ratner wasn’t happy, and that he didn’t want Scientology anywhere near RatPac Entertainment. Since then, however, things have apparently been smoothed over, judging by the photos taken Wednesday night at Ratner’s Benedict Canyon home, Hilhaven Lodge.
The occasion was a celebration of an upcoming RatPac-funded television series, In Harm’s Way, that Deadline.com described this way:
Brett Ratner and James Packer’s RatPac Entertainment last night announced In Harm’s Way, a scripted multi-platform project inspired by the United Nations’ work around the world. Created by emerging British filmmaker David Raymond, the event-driven anthology mini-series will dramatize true stories of UN staff who risk their lives working to ensure that the organization fulfills its mandate. Each season will focus on a specific crisis in a different country with the first season, written by Raymond, to be set during the 1999 East Timor crisis. Future seasons will be directed by different sets of filmmakers and cover new topics.
But it is interesting to see Tommy Davis in this exalted company. Do you think anyone bothered to ask him about his antics as Scientology’s mouthpiece?
Scientology on the syllabus
Posters over at WWP and here in the comments have pointed to a college course being offered about Scientology at Cal State University San Bernardino this fall that will use the church’s propaganda book, “What is Scientology?” as its coursebook.
We spoke to its instructor, Dr. Arlette Poland, and she explained that this was a brief, three-week course offered through Osher Lifelong Learning, not a regular CSUSB class, and that appearances to the contrary, she’s well aware of Scientology’s controversies and will be discussing them during the course. She was a pleasure to speak with, and we hope this will tamp down some of the speculation about the course.
Posted by Tony Ortega on August 15, 2016 at 07:00
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August 15th, 2016 | Category: Tommy Davis
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