Faux Bernini 2.jpgEvidently tired of dragging down the Catholic Church, blockbuster novelist Dan Brown has apparently decided to found his own religion–and yet it looks an awful lot like the one he has accused of everything that has ever gone wrong in the History of the World!
Hey, if you can’t beat ’em…So will Ron Howard be pope? Or Tom Hanks? I’d vote for the latter, now that they’ve apparently tamed some of that silly mane from the first Dan Brown-Ron Howard thriller, “The Da Vinci Code.” For the sequel, “Angels & Demons,” the producers couldn’t get permission to film in the Vatican–shocked? Here’s the Telegraph’s take: “The original book by Dan Brown so infuriated the Catholic Church that the Vatican banned director Ron Howard from filming there.” Well, no one gets permission to film in the Vatican. Ever. But really, would you let them in?
Faux St. Peter's.jpgSo, in keeping with the best Hollywood traditions, the producers are re-constructing St. Peter’s Square in Sony’s Southern California studio. (Someplace, novelist and Catholic convert Walker Percy said that in the modern world, the religious choice is between Rome and California. I need to find that citation. In any case, now no one need choose…)
I registered my doubts about the novel earlier, but I must say that from what I can tell, the sets look pretty remarkable. Except where is the scaffolding that’s always on every Roman monument that you really want to see?
Faux Colonnade.jpg The Church of Dan apparently does have a saint already: “During shooting in Rome earlier this year, Hanks won widespread admiration when he halted filming to escort a passing bride to her wedding at the Pantheon.”
H/T: RNS blog.

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