USA TODAY US Edition - - LIFE -

“Trapped in the Closet” (Sea­son 9, 2005) and “201/202” (Sea­son 14, 2010)

HOW BAD WAS IT? Cruise came to South Park to pay homage to Stan, who was de­clared the spir­i­tual suc­ces­sor to Scien­tol­ogy founder L. Ron Hub­bard. But when the kid didn’t lav­ish praise on his act­ing, Cruise had a cri­sis of con­fi­dence and hid in Stan’s closet, where he was joined by John Tra­volta and R. Kelly. MEM­O­RABLE LINE: “Tom Cruise won’t come out of the closet!”

HOW’D HE TAKE IT? Not well. Cruise, who was pro­mot­ing Mis

sion: Im­pos­si­ble 3 at the time for cor­po­rate cousin Para­mount, threat­ened to stop do­ing pub­lic­ity if Com­edy Cen­tral showed re­peats of the episode. (The net­work agreed, for a while). But in­cur­ring the wrath of Cruise wasn’t the only fall­out: Fel­low Scien­tol­o­gist Isaac Hayes, who voiced Chef, quit the show. His char­ac­ter was later killed off in spec­tac­u­lar fash­ion.

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