For the record, I have serious doubts about Scientology’s validity (even more so than most other organised religions). However, I like the angle of this documentary: attempting to find the honest truth through open interviews with current followers, and finding nothing positive and only its detractors willing to speak, and the Church sending out its goons to investigate the investigators.
Without access, though, it’s trickier. I tended only to meet the Scientologists in charged settings – when they were filming me, or ambushing one of my contributors, or accusing me of trespassing. It’s surprisingly hard to be nice to someone when you feel they aren’t being nice to you. But we strove to be fair to Scientology. I tried to see the world from their side. And there is much to admire in Scientology: the dedication of its devotees and the world-changing character of its vision. We also questioned the motivations and credibility of our ex-Scientologists, who, it is always worth remembering, were signed up to the Scientology programme for years, and sometimes decades, before deciding to leave.