Will Smith Drops Scientology from his Annual Donations

Show Biz/July 16, 2010

Good news: Will Smith didn't make any charitable donations to Scientology last year.

In the recent past, Smith's private self-named charitable foundation had donated thousands of dollars to groups associated with Scientology.

So despite Will and wife Jada Pinkett Smith's recent appearance at a Scientology lunch in Hollywood with celebrity disciples Tom Cruise and Jenna Elfman, the couple is not giving the cultish group tax free contributions any more.

last year the Smiths handed over $70,000 to Scientology groups. Will once equated the Christian bible with Scientology in an interview. That didn't go over too well.

This time, instead, the Will Smith Foundation, in papers just filed with the IRS and Guidestar.org, turned its attention elsewhere. Smith gave away about $575,475 in 2009. Another place he could have contributed money but didn't? His New Village Academy in Calabasas, California. There's no entry for it. New Village, which has yet to file its own first Form 990 with the IRS, still advertises Scientology teaching on its curriculum list.

The Smiths did some interesting things with their money. A lot of it went to Christian ministries and teaching, including $12,800 to a group called Daughters of Power, in Beverly Hills. It's an organization that does sort of Christian finishing for teenage girls.

The couple also gave $10,000 to the Harvard Foundation-maybe they're laying the ground work to send little Jaden or Willow, their movie star children.

The biggest amounts went to Baltimore School for the Arts Foundation ($200,000); City of Refuge in Los Angeles ($150.000). Will also continues to send money to the Muhammad Ali Museum in Louisville. That's a nice touch since he played Ali in the great Michael Mann film.

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