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Tom Hanks defends new film Angels and Demons against the Vatican [See movie trailer here]

Posted by dorian on May 4, 2009

May 4, 2009

Tom Hanks defends Dan Brown’s Angels & Demons against the Vatican


(Vittorio Zunino Celoto) Mr Hanks said: "There's no major theological discussion that goes on, other than science versus faith. I just solve the murder"

As the film version of Dan Brown’s Angels & Demons was given its Rome premiere today Tom Hanks, the film’s star, defended the film against Vatican charges that it was sacrilegious.

The plot of Angels & Demons involves a secret brotherhood called the Illuminati and a conspiracy to destroy the Vatican during a papal conclave.

“People will see there’s nothing sacrilegious about it at all,” Mr Hanks told theNew York Daily News. “Yes, we had a few things go on that are completely fictionalised. But there’s no reason to have a big hurly-burly over what is essentially a whodunnit.“ He added: “There’s no major theological discussion that goes on, other than science versus faith. There’s no winner in that argument. I just solve the murder.”

Ron Howard, the director, complained that the Vatican had “interfered” with his team’s efforts to get permission to shoot scenes in Rome. He said that he had not formally sought co-operation from the Vatican because of the opposition he had encountered earlier when filming The Da Vinci Code.


Pope Benedict XVI

Tom Hanks plays the Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon, who was also the hero of The Da Vinci Code. The Illuminati kidnap four cardinals regarded as front-runners to be the next Pope, threatening to kill one an hour and then explode an antimatter bomb at the Vatican.

Father Federico Lombardi, the Vatican spokesman, declined to comment on Mr Howard’s remarks, saying that they were designed only to drum up publicity for the film.

Church leaders called on the faithful to boycott the 2006 film of The Da Vinci Code, which suggests that Jesus married Mary Magdalene and fathered children by her. It also depicts the conservative Catholic organisation Opus Dei as a murderous cult.

An Italian bishop, Monsignor Antonio Rosario Mennonna, said at the weekend that Angels & Demons was similarly “highly denigrating, defamatory and offensive” to the Catholic Church.

Last month Ryan Cook, the special effects adviser on Angels & Demons, told the Italian film magazine Ciak that “the ban on filming put us in serious difficulty because we were not able to carry out the photographic surveys necessary to reconstruct the setting. So for weeks we sent a team of people who mixed with tourists and took thousands of photos and video footage.”

This had enabled the film team to create digital images of St Peter’s Square and the Sistine Chapel. For some interior shots the team used the former royal palace at Caserta, near Naples, to stand in for the Vatican.

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here’s the trailer:


One Response to “Tom Hanks defends new film Angels and Demons against the Vatican [See movie trailer here]”

  1. […] (vbc) vbc.style.visibility = ‘hidden’; e.style.backgroundColor = ‘#fff’ }); }); May 4 Tom Hanks defends new film … trackback from post […From The TimesMay 4, 2009Tom Hanks defends Dan Brown’s Angels & Demons […]


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