Jude Law to play fictional Pope in new TV series

From the best Catholic weekly in the UK (and not just I write for it), The Catholic Herald, comes this.

Apparently, a new series is being filmed these days starring Jude Law as an American Pope

Jude Law appears in ‘uncomfortable’ papal robes while filming TV series in Venice

The British actor is playing a fictional pontiff in a new series expected to be screened later this year

Jude Law has appeared in papal robes [read: cassock] in Venice on the set of a new TV series.

Law, who plays the part of fictional Pope Pius XII [I suspect they meant Pius XIII.] in The Young Pope, wore a cassock and a zucchetto while filming scenes in St Mark’s Square on Tuesday.

During filming, he stood on a raised platform and spoke into a microphone, in a scene possibly depicting a papal audience.

The series, which is a joint production between HBO, Sky and Canal+, is expected to air later this year.

Directed by the Oscar-winning Italian filmmaker Paolo Sorrentino, the plot reportedly tells the story of Law’s conservative American pontiff clashing with Vatican hierarchy.  [So, the Curia is the liberal antagonist?]

Diane Keaton also appears in the series as Sister Mary, one of Pius’s closest aides. [Cringe.]

The Young Pope began filming last year with locations including Rome and South Africa. There is expected to be further filming in America and Puerto Rico.

Discussing his papal costume, Law told Hollywood Reporter: “At the moment, it’s that I can only sit on a very uncomfortable sort of stool because they don’t want my papal robes to get creased. So I have to sort of hitch them up and put them over the stool and perch.  [Yes yes… priests have been doing this for centuries.]

“So once I put the robes on, I usually spend the day, 14 hours, whatever, unable to sit. So I look great, but I’m very uncomfortable.”  [Suck it up, buttercup.]

He added: “The best part of the job is this opportunity to educate yourself and teach yourself and submerge yourself in the world, in the facts, the history, background, skills, whatever it may be, of the character you’re playing.”

Sorrentino, whose latest film Youth will be released in the UK on January 29, said The Young Pope is about “how faith can be searched for and lost”.

“[It shows] the inner struggle between the huge responsibility of the head of the Catholic Church and the miseries of the simple man that fate (or the Holy Spirit) chose as Pontiff,” he said.

We shall see.

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13 Responses to Jude Law to play fictional Pope in new TV series

  1. Dr. Edward Peters says:

    “Diane Keaton also appears in the series as Sister Mary, one of Pius’s closest aides. [Cringe.]”

    Ah yes, DK. Perhaps the most over-rated actress of her generation. Without Woody, no one would’a heard of her. And I’ll never forgive her for whining her way through The Godfather.

  2. HeatherPA says:

    Dr. Peters hits it squarely on the head regarding Diane Keaton. Yikes. That she is playing a “trusted nun” is enough to make this series something to avoid. Sigh.

  3. pelerin says:

    Yes I was confused by the term ‘fictional Pope Pius XII’ too as I was sure there was a Pius XII. To be expected from the secular tabloids but not from the Herald.

  4. Boniface says:

    I thought at first the plot sounded like it was drifting towards something along the lines of Baron Corvo’s novel Hadrian VII, but apparently not…

  5. Lucas says:

    Why do I have a feeling this is going to end with the Pope accepting all sorts of liberal ideologies?

  6. Scott W. says:

    And I’ll never forgive her for whining her way through The Godfather.

    Ugh. The ringing in my ears of “Michael…Michael” had almost stopped until you reminded me. :)

  7. MrTipsNZ says:

    “So once I put the robes on, I usually spend the day, 14 hours, whatever, unable to sit. So I look great, but I’m very uncomfortable.” [Suck it up, buttercup.]

    LOL, now I have to clean the coffee off my floor but that’s a zinger to start the day with +:-)

  8. johnmann says:

    I would bet on a Downton Abbey like narrative. Kind-hearted but conservative patriarch objects to “progress” but learns to accept it, over and over and over again. If there’s any bone thrown to conservatives it’s the idea that conservatives aren’t evil, just wrong.

  9. Michelle F says:

    This can’t be any worse than ABC’s planned new series The Real O’Neals, which is supposed to be a sitcom about a Catholic family with a homosexual son.

  10. disco says:

    If there were an American Pope Pius XIII – ideally a former Archbishop of St Louis – I could live with that.

  11. redshoes says:

    With this allusion to Pius XII, might the Sister Mary character be roughly based on “The Popess”? Does she have a canary?

  12. paladin says:

    disco wrote:

    If there were an American Pope Pius XIII – ideally a former Archbishop of St Louis – I could live with that.

    From your lips to God’s ears!

  13. Ferde Rombola says:

    “If there were an American Pope Pius XIII – ideally a former Archbishop of St Louis – I could live with that.

    From your lips to God’s ears!”

    I second the motion. If it was Cardinal Sarah, I’d burst into tears!. (CAVEAT: I weep for extra points and ground rule doubles.)