Actor and former pro skateboarder Jason Lee moved to Denton about a year ago, and while he hasn't been the subject of much local news, he has been the topic of plenty of gossip.
Shortly after the My Name is Earl star settled into a local plot of land with his wife and kids, parody sites like The Dentonian and TheBlackSheepOnline.com chronicled Lee's oh-so-devious plans to take over Denton and buy the whole damn town out of its creative integrity. One local comedian's "Future-History Timeline of Denton, Texas" pegged February 2018 as the date all local businesses are converted to churches of Scientology. Hide your kids, hide your wives y'all.
The town's in the throes of a publicized identity crisis and everyone seems to want to point blame at the famous guy who moved in. But today, Lee offers a response to the haters: Lay off me, bro.
In an interview with local blog The Dentonite, Lee addresses the rumors that have been swirling about town. Yes, he's a one-fifth owner in local gastro-brewpub Barley and Board, but that's it. There are no plans for total domination, he says, and certainly not in the way of Scientology, which he doesn't practice anymore.
"While I'd be happy to take credit for these amazing places, I don't in fact own West Oak Coffee Bar, or Earl's, or 940's, etc. And I have nothing to do with Rubber Gloves or any other venues or businesses closing down," he told the pub. "And being that we don't practice Scientology, and that we aren't particularly interested in opening religious centers in general, we have no plans to open a Scientology center."
"We're just here like anyone else who wants to be a part of Denton's very cool creative community, and to be involved and perhaps help where we can," he said.
And if you're looking forward to seeing Cat Power at Oaktopia music festival next weekend, maybe thank his wife, Ceren, who helped get her on the bill.