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'South Park' episode switched by network

March 17, 2006 at 4:23 PM

NEW YORK, March 17 (UPI) -- "South Park" creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone have thrown down the gauntlet in their battle over their right to parody Scientology.

Singer Isaac Hayes, a Scientologist who has voiced the randy "Chef" since "South Park" started on Comedy Central, quit the show last week over "Trapped in the Closet," an episode spoofing Scientology and Tom Cruise.

Then Comedy Central Wednesday pulled a re-run of the episode scheduled for Wednesday, Daily Variety said. Although bloggers claimed the schedule change was at the behest of Cruise, who threatened not to promote "Mission: Impossible 3" for Viacom-owned Paramount, a Cruise spokesman told Variety that was not true.

"He never said any such thing about 'Mission: Impossible 3,'" the spokesman said.

Parker and Stone, meanwhile, issued their own statement to Variety:

"So, Scientology, you may have won THIS battle, but the million-year war for earth has just begun! Temporarily anozinizing our episode will NOT stop us from keeping Thetans forever trapped in your pitiful man-bodies. Curses and drat! You have obstructed us for now, but your feeble bid to save humanity will fail! Hail Xenu!!!"

The statement was signed, "Trey Parker and Matt Stone, servants of the dark lord Xenu."

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