Saturday, December 15, 2007

Just as long as there are no upskirts ...

In an apparent indication that Pope Benedict XVI realizes that he's no John Paul II, the Vatican has brought in a consultant, legendary Italian director Franco Zeffirelli, to work on the Pontiff's image. Zeffirelli thinks that Benedict's image isn't happy and that his wardrobe is too flashy, but admits that John Paul is a hard act to follow:

"Coming after a pope as telegenic as John Paul II is a difficult task."

No crap, Sherlock. And you never say JPII needing any help in conveying his image - well, maybe except for the time he toured with 2 Live Crew. But that mash-up ended badly in a clash over who ate all of the green M&Ms at the craft services table.

Meanwhile, Zeffirelli, who directed Romeo and Juliet and Jesus of Nazareth, also will help the Vatican by "defending the faith in cinema" - which means making sure those who make so-called Christian-themed movies know exactly what they're doing. In commenting on that, Zeffirelli threw Mel Gibson - who starred in the director's 1990 rendition of Hamlet - under the missionary bus:

"You have to pay attention, as shown by the fallout from Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ which irreversibly harmed the memory of millions of people."

Yeah, that sounds like a thumbs-down to me. Wonder what Franco thinks of The Golden Compass. Not to mention Bad Santa, the third-greatest Christmas movie ever!

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