New Tom Cruise film stirs Nazi controversy


Two hot-button issues in Germany — the Nazi era and Scientology — are being pushed simultaneously by a new film in which Tom Cruise plays the country's most-famous anti-Hitler plotter, sparking controversy in Berlin. 

Cruise, one of Scientology's best-known adherents, is to play Col. Claus Graf Schenk von Stauffenberg — the aristocratic army officer executed after a failed attempt to assassinate Hitler in 1944 — in director Bryan Singer's new film "Valkyrie." The film's German co-producers say they were given permission to use the former German general staff headquarters in Berlin, where Stauffenberg worked and where he was executed, and that they plan a detailed, historically accurate treatment. 

But word that a Scientologist would play Stauffenberg has rubbed some the wrong way. Germany's government considers Scientology a commercial enterprise that takes advantage of vulnerable people, and critics maintain that one of its adherents should not be playing one of the Nazi-era's few heroes. 

(Source: Associated Press)

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