Italian TV shows Pope movie as Conclave begins

Karol: The Man Who Became Pope - a telemovie about Pope John Paul II's early life - has been given its premiere in Vatican City.

BBC News reports that the film dramatises the life of Karol Wojtyla from when he was a young man in Poland until becoming pontiff.

Italian TV is screening it in two parts - the first yesterday, to coincide with the commencement of the papal conclave.

It was in production for months before the Holy Father died on 2 April. He is played by Polish actor Piotr Adamczyk.

"We were trying not to copy Karol Wojtyla," Adamczyk said. "Not to copy his gestures, his voice - but to give symbols to try to touch the fragments of his great personality."

Last year, Pope John Paul II told Adamczyk: "You're crazy to make a film about me. What did I ever do?"

The movie, which had a budget of 11m euros (Ł7.5m), begins with Germany's invasion of Poland in September 1939.

The future Pope was forced into hiding several years later following a crackdown on religious teaching.

In a recreation of the 1978 conclave that elected him Pope, one scene shows him as a cardinal, in tears as the votes are counted.

The film was shown at the Lateran Pontifical University on Thursday and film-makers said they had no objections from the Vatican despite embellishing some parts of the story for the dramatisation.

Vatican premiere for Pope movie (BBC 18/4/05)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
Karol, Un uomo diventato Papa (Pontificia Universita' Lateranense)
Karol (Internet Movie Database)
Piotr Adamczyk (filmweb.pl) | Karol. Historia czlowieka, który zostal papiezem

19 Apr 2005