Scientologist John Travolta insists that his latest movie, L. Ron Hubbard's Battlefield Earth, is not ? repeat not ? a propaganda film for the controversial religion founded by the late author.

"It's silly!" Travolta tells TV Guide Online when asked about the movie's alleged hidden messages. "What can I say? It moves into a ridiculous zone.

"I don't know of any particular messages other than the ones I've heard," says Travolta, who produced and stars in the sci-fi film. "People have told me 'knowledge is power' and things like that. Basically it's an entertainment piece and I did it as such."

Playing the most over-the-top villain of his career gave Travolta the opportunity to return to his roots. "I'm from the New York theater and I rarely get to do things in a theatrical manner," he says. "This movie allowed me to. Good guys are always struggling within themselves. There's a limit of how outlandish they can be. Villains get the freedom to be theatrical."

But don't expect the Grease legend to return to the stage anytime soon. "I did theater from the time I was 12 to 26," he says. "I did long runs of shows. I found film to be a little more refreshing because I could do something different every three months. It's a tough one. I do miss the audience interaction. On the other hand, I really love what film allows me."