Recently, we shared an article telling the story of a young woman’s escape from Scientology. After reading the article, my wife came across the beat poet Jamie DeWolf. DeWolf just happens to be the great grandson of L. Ron Hubbard himself, and he speaks out against Scientology when he can.
“Some people think I’m just coming out of the gate, the start of my anti-Scientology career,” he says. But it was more than a decade ago, in 2000, that he first dramatized his family background. Today, however, he has a hard time looking back at that performance, saying that it was “an incoherent mess.” He had a lot more to learn about his famous great-grandfather and about Scientology. He’s been apt pupil ever since. But he’s rarely talked openly about it. (He also had a different name then. Born Jamie Kennedy, he has taken his mother’s maiden name, DeWolf, to avoid confusion with another comic named Jamie Kennedy.)
“I think it’s funny when people think I’m trying to cash in on the Scientology aspect, because I’ve actually kept away from it a long time because of the hassle,” he says.
After that first performance, his mother was visited by a couple of men claiming to be poets who were interested in his material. She got them to admit they were Scientologists. They subsequently branded him an “anti-religious slam poet” in a flier.
He tries to keep his family out of his act. He did not want it consuming his life. He will only talk about it by request.
“I had a really difficult time. How could I put this into one monologue?” he says. There’s a lot about Hubbard and Scientology to talk about: “Anytime anyone asks me about it, I tell them, are you ready to sit down and listen to me for an hour? There’s so much to it.”
Maybe in the future there will be a full one man show about his family’s infamous past. He has enough to put it together and he plans on doing it, but that is for later. Jamie did, however, put together a monologue on his great grandfather for NPR’s Snap Judgment which became one of the most famous pieces to come out of the show and was the performance of the year.