Head of the Catholic church, Pope Francis is set to become the first pope in cinematic history to play himself in a movie. He will star in the Hollywood forthcoming movie, ‘Beyond the Sun,’ which will feature children around the world emulating the apostles, while searching for Jesus Christ.
Pope Francis has quickly become the most popular and frequently discussed religious figure in recent memory and this is taken a step further by making this acting debut in a full-length family adventure movie, which is marketed toward religious families.
Pope Francis since his investiture as the Head of the Catholic Church has brought a new style of leadership to the church. He has done away with the old ways of doing things bringing instead a high level of interaction with his adherents.
The casting was born out of the Pope’s request to the filmmakers to make a movie for children that communicates the message of Jesus. All profits from the faith-based film will be donated to two charities, El Almendro and Los Hogares de Cristo, which help aid at-risk children and young adults in need, and are located in Argentina, Pope Francis’ home country.
According to Hollywood-based AMBI Pictures, makers of the film the movie is described as a family adventure story where children from different cultures emulate the apostles while searching for Jesus in the world around them.
The filmmakers say it is intended to “spiritually engage and encourage audiences of all ages to transmit Jesus’ words, to understand them and integrate them to live a better life, make good choices and help others.”
AMBI co-founders Andrea Lervolino and Lady Monika Bacardi will finance and produce the film. Graciela Rodriguez wrote the screenplay and will co-produce with Gabriel Leybu. Monsignor Eduardo Garcia will be Pope Francis’ advisor. Expressing their excitements at this new project, they remarked;
“Our excitement and gratitude toward His Holiness, Pope Francis participating in this film is beyond words, this is not just a movie for us, it’s a message, and who better to have on your side to deliver an important societal and spiritual message than the Pope.” Lervolino said.
“It is a great honor for Andrea and I to have the opportunity to work with His Holiness, Pope Francis, to spread the awareness of his message, through this film. We will make a movie everyone involved with can be proud of. Not only will families from around globe enjoy this film and be entertained, but they will be moved,” Bacardi said.
AMBI will oversee worldwide distribution for “Beyond the Sun” through its Los Angeles-based international sales division. Principal photography is slated to begin early this year in Italy. Pope Francis won’t have to travel far to make his appearance, because the movie will be shot in Italy.
No other cast members other than Pope Francis have been named to star in “Beyond the Sun,” and a director has yet to sign on, but it’s going to be hard to beat such an impressive billing with the Pope in the credits.
Meanwhile, Monsignor Dario Edoardo Viganň of the Vatican has stated that, the Pope won’t act in the movie, but video clips of the pope will be shown in the movie.
“Video clips of the Pope could appear in the film. The Pope is not an actor.”
However, the AMBI website suggests that the movie intends to end with an epilogue from Pope Francis telling children how and where to find Jesus.