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Scientology's Velvet Mafia

Oct. 27 2008, Published 7:07 a.m. ET

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VELVETEEN HABIT Cruise, Smith, Jan. 9 (Photo: Getty Images)

First came word that Will Smith, delving deeper into the Church of Scientology, had handed out vouchers for a free "personality test" as the wrap present he gave to crew on the set of his latest film, Hancock. Then he made a red-carpet appearance on January 9 in Rome sporting a velvet blazer, on the very same evening that "Scientology's No. 2," Smith's friend Mr. Tom Cruise, wears one to escort his wife Katie Holmes to the premiere of her new film, Mad Money.

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We'll admit we don't know all that much about Scientology, except for the confusing bits we gleaned from this week's New Yorker piece on the Church's Celebrity Center, where Kirstie Alley and John Travolta lounge around talking about thetans on gaudy, reproduction Louis XIV furniture. But we had absolutely no idea that high priests were required to wear dandy, retro evening wear. Chic!

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