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back to article Ron Howard accuses Pope of scuppering Dan Brown movie

Hollywood film director and former Fonz sidekick Ron Howard has accused the Vatican of a dark plot to knobble his latest blockbuster Dan Brown adaptation, Angels and Demons. Howard reckons the Pope and his helpers used "back channels" to scupper attempts to film around key landmarks in Rome. The production team had already been …

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Not Often I Side With The Church....

But I do hate that Tom Hanks. Did you see Terminal? Ugh! Puke!

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Saved by the church!

For once, I'm siding with a God's Representative On Earth (Warden of Heaven?) in their effort to suppress Hollywood Crap Productions.

Also, a "flask of antimatter"? Do you get these at Home Depot or something?

Also also, we need a Darth Vader icon.

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Black Helicopters

Pulled strings?

I'm certainly no fan of organised religion, but I have to wonder why Ron Howard feels he has a (god-given?) right to film in any building he chooses.

If the director of Antitrust had demanded that it be filmed on the Microsoft campus, with Microsoft logos in full view, would it be considered a 'conspiracy' when Microsoft fail to grant them access?

Twisted religion is bad enough, but stoking the flames with ridiculous conspiracy theories isn't going to help anyone.

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Coat

Not So Happy Days...

Maybe Richie should head to Arnold's for a quick cheeseburger and seek council from the Arthur Fonzerelli in the mens room like days gone by. I do remember the Fonz blessing himself from time to time so maybe he'll put in a kind word with the Pope... Oul Benny XIV is quare craic if you get him on a good day.

Mine is the one with the Rosary Beads, that double up as a garrotte, in the pocket...

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Anonymous Coward

that book is one long test...

...designed to test for scientists when the revolution comes. If you can read it and never flinch once then you're definitely not a scientist. I gave up on the thing as I started to look like I had a nervous tic.

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Anonymous Coward

And there was I thinking that the Roman Catholic church

was solely a festering pit of evil. I shall revise my opinion forthwith. Dan Brown's status in my pantheon of annoying oxygen and paper thieves, however, shall remain undisturbed

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Anonymous Coward

not just the church

"Of course, it may be that the organisation responsible for some of the greatest works of art and literature in Western civilisation simply thinks Brown's books and the films based on them are a bit crap"

They are incredibly formulaic as stories and very simply structured. The only thing exceptional about them apart is the sheer amount of real world details given in them, hiding how shallow it actually is, and giving them a credability that most other works of fiction don't have.

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Anonymous Coward

For my next film

"The Da Vinci Coeds", a ruthless and unscrupulous professor has his way with female undergraduates unable to distinguish the profound from the bogus. Opening in theatres worldwide July!

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Stop

It was already scuppered

because Dan Brown wrote the book.

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Alert

Holy papal capes Batman

Those guys in the funny clothes actually believe in the invisible sky daddy!

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Coat

Pah this is also all an elaborate hoax....

...the pope, Dan Brown and Ron Howard are all lizards from another dimension.

They just enjoy forcing us to watch mulleted men run around old landmarks they built to hide their spaceships!

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So it's...

... "Ron Howard accuses Pope of scuppering Dan Brown movie" and not "Ron Howard realises he's made another shitbag of a film based on Dan Brown's OTHER ridiculous entry for his junior school's creative writing competition"...?

Curious.

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IT Angle

Mmmm

I was touched by the bishop.

And his remarks.

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Nev
Black Helicopters

[cough]scientologist [cough]

He doesn't have a leg to stand on!

(PS Well said, Ian Chard)

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Paris Hilton

lol

Let me get this straight, he takes a book which is rude towards the Vatican and then wonders why the church won't help him turn it into a film? Pesky churchmen standing in the way of God of Commerce! How dare they?!

@ac 13:39 - you'll get my bill for a new keyboard, though I suspect that film has already been made. I just don't dare google for it.

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Flame

Che cosa c'è, "Il Pape"?

Tsk. It's "Il Papa" (Italian) or "Le Pape" (French). Consider yourselves summarily excommunicated.

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Paris Hilton

Publicity stunt

Lets see..... the filming in Rome wrapped up about a year ago, but Ronny makes the statement about the 'cover up' now. Could it be because it was really a problem, or becuase the film is being released this week...? Why didn't he make all this noise when it happened last year?

another example of using the 'press' to generate a fake 'controversy' to sell a crappy product.

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Dan Brown = crap ?

So is water wet and is ice cold ? For anyone who knows the first thing about computers or security Digital Fortress is so bad it's embarrassing.

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A good start

SO if God is all powerfull why does he allow Jim Carry movies?

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Unhappy

My first (and last) attempts at Dan Brown

I started reading Angels and Demons once, having never heard of Dan Brown at the time. I gave up after the first few chapters because it was like reading a 15-year-old's first Creative English assignment.

Being a sucker for punishment, I also watched the Da Vinci Code movie. I think if the Spanish Inquisition had turned up and burned my eyes out, I would probably have welcomed it.

I'm no cultural highbrow but Mr Brown truly is the Colonel Sanders of the literary world.

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Tedium ad Nauseum my child

It'll be interesting to see how different the film of Angels & Demons is from DaVinci Code. Reading the book gave me strong feelings of deja vu. I had to keep looking at the cover to check I hadn't picked up DaVinci Code instead.

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Coat

You think this is bad

Wait until they do Digital fortress!!!!!

The only book to make me SCREAM in frustrated rage at it's imbicylic basic premis.

Not even a Microsoft manual has gotten me _that_ wound up before.

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Anonymous Coward

And for my next book...

Angles and daemons - a voyage from trigonometry into causal determinism (or thermodynamics - much like dan brown I'll start writing and see where it goes).

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Dead Vulture

Freedom of panorama

I've seen this story several times now, including from the Associated Press, and not one has mentioned what I suspect is the actual legal basis for the "scuppering":

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panoramafreiheit

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Rights

IanF: "I have to wonder why Ron Howard feels he has a (god-given?) right to film in any building he chooses."

I got the impression he felt he had the right because he'd previously been given permission, which was subsequently revoked due to Vatican influence. Making a feature film isn't like making a video for YouTube, you don't just roll up to a church with a crew of thirty and a few million euros worth of kit and ask "Mind if we shoot a couple of scenes here?" These things are generally planned several weeks (if not months) in advance, so to have your film permit revoked just days before you'd planned to film can throw a serious kink in your schedule. Not to mention the rewrites and replanning involved in shooting replacement scenes in places where you do have permission.

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Bah!

4 Ron Howard:

"When you come to film in Rome, the official statement to you is that the Vatican has no influence".

And when you come to New York you are probably told that the Mob has no influence.

And when you come to Hollywood you are probably told that the various luminaries of the silver screen have no influence.

The real problem would seem to be that when you come to Rome, the luminaries of Hollywood's Silver Screen have no influence. You should have networked more when you were in New York.

:o)

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The Da Vinci Coed

AC, you didn't dare so I googled it for you. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1280507/

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Funny how Ron mentions this now...

Just as his film is hitting the cinema, not back when it was being filmed and the (alleged) problems occurred.

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re:For my next film

sounds better than the alterntive sell me a ticket

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Anonymous Coward

Lucky he didn't get excommunicated

just like Hitler did in WWII, oh wait.

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Terrible Book

...and I can't tell why they're still mumping on about it after more than 2000 years.

Angels and Demons is undoubtedly worse. My flatmate managed to read the Da Vinci Code but it took her two attempts to get through Angels and Demons. She was pretty determined, 'cos she'd borrowed it from a friend who said it was one of the best books she'd ever written. Everything I've ever heard about it says that far from being any good, it's truly awful.

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Dan Brown

Wasn't 'Angels and Demons' written BEFORE 'The Da Vinci Code'? Which means Dan Brown was still developing his powers as an author, so it's unlikely we'll see the later novel's 'extraordinary' prose, 'astonishing' plot and 'thrilling' character development.

But I reckon it will still read like he had the wikipedia guide to Rome open in front of him.

At a wild guess:

'Langdon walked across St. Peter's Square, distinguished from the territory of Italy only by a white line along the limit of the square, where it touches Piazza Pio XII. St. Peter's Square is reached through the Via della Conciliazione which runs from the Tiber River to St. Peter's. This grand approach was constructed by Benito Mussolini after the conclusion of the Lateran Treaty.

'It was only then, as he perused the menu in a family-owned trattatoria that he saw the reflected image of the lesbian assassin nun wielding the cold fusion assault rifle.'*

Word to Ron Howard and Tom Hanks - you gave us 'Apollo 13' for crissakes - why are you making this shite???

* If anyone has a couple of million burning a hole in their pocket I am willing to write the rest of my screenplay - complete with the lesbian assassin nun, the cold fusion assault rifle, prominent placement of the product of your choice (Coca Cola, Pepsi, the Shroud of Turin you name it, I'll cram it in between the roof-top car chase and the CGI sidekick), Dolph Lundgren and/or Jean Claude van Damme in a dirty green vest as the mitteleuropean action hero who dies a gory death at the hands of the Provisional wing of the Salvation Army, and a huge, deeply satisfying climactic explosion which will have me venerated by hearing specialists for years to come. Think Michael Bay without the taste and restraint but with gothic chanting on the soundtrack.

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Anonymous Coward

Digital Fortress

I made the gross mistake of

(a) reading Digital Fortress (in my defence, I was on holiday, and it was the only book available after having exhausted my books and moved on to the girlfried's)

but worse (b) reading it after having just completed Neal Stephenson's masterpeice 'Cryptonomicon' - a book about cryptography from an author who knows what he's talking about. If any further proof of Dan Brown's ignorance of all matters relating to computers and cryptography, 'Cryptonomicon' is it.

Neal Stephenson = genius

Dan Brown = pratt (though rich pratt, which is possibly more annoying, making squillions of dollars from atrocious fiction)

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@Rights

It's not obvious from this story, but googling indicates the permits were not revoked - they were never issued in the first place.

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Alien

@Evil Graham

The Col Sanders of film? I beg to differ. I've had food from KFC which didn't make me feel like throwing up on the spot. I've not found a Dan Brown book which managed it.

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Goodness

What a snooty article!

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Paris Hilton

get a grip

This is Rome, the way to clear back channels is to lubricate the bureaucracy with a thick brown envelope. If you don't do that then of course these problems are going to come up and they will almost certainly be blamed on the unaccountable guest in the heart of the city.

Paris because she knows how lubricate everything, including bureaucracy.

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@AC, Re: not just the church

"The only thing exceptional about them apart is the sheer amount of real world details given in them", It's unfortunate that all the "detail" he puts into his books is a load of crap. He can't get anything correct.

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Black Helicopters

@flask of Antimatter

I met a serious team of quietly spoken North Americans that many years ago came to the PS-AA (Proton Synchrotron - Antiproton Accumulator) at CERN and asked the antimatter bottle question.

They left happy. I don't recall Dan Brown being a member of the team!

Disclaimer: I read and enjoyed "Holy Blood (and the) Holy Grail" Corgi. ISBN 0-552-12138

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Happy

Digital Fortress

I read it after a foray into the world of cryptography and the technical side of it is laughably bad. Still, there haven't been many books since the '70s where entire government complexes explode because a computer gets caught in a 'does not compute' loop.

Oops, did I give away the ending ?

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Joke

To late

"The Da Vinci Coeds", a ruthless and unscrupulous professor has his way with female undergraduates unable to distinguish the profound from the bogus. Opening in theatres worldwide July!"

Already been done http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1280507/

"Three sexy spies are tasked with tracking down a coed who can unlock the scandalous secret to a ring that holds the power to spark people's carnal desires in this adult adventure."

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Thanks for the laughs

1. Anyone who thinks the Vatican has no influence on Rome is an idiot. ROMAN Catholic Church should have been the first clue.

2. Anyone who thought the Vatican (or Roman officials) would allow filming in their churches for this book is an idiot. They have every right to deny the filming. The timing seems questionable, but then we don't have all the information, either. I wouldn't trust either side (the Vatican or the filmmaker) to speak the entire truth.

3. "Angels and Demons" was Dan Brown's FIRST book, written BEFORE Da Vinci Code. If you're going to comment about them, at least get the chronology correct.

4. I personally like Dan Brown's books for the most part, but then I read them for their entertainment value with no preconceived notions or ideas. Different people, different tastes. I had a hell of a time getting through Neuromancer, having to give it two attempts because I found the writing style extremely difficult to read.

5. Anyone reading ANY fiction book, or watching ANY movie or television show expecting it to be technically accurate is an idiot. Yes, those of us in the computer industry know that CSI, 24, etc are completely ridiculous from an IT perspective. And I would venture a guess that it's the same for everything -- that medical shows are completely unrealistic in the medical work, that the cop and lawyer shows are completely unrealistic from a law standpoint, etc. Sit down and realize that they're written for ENTERTAINMENT, not to be graded on their technical accuracy. The writers do what they do to make the show/movie/book more interesting to the general public. Whenever you feel yourself getting all worked up because what the characters are saying or doing isn't technically accurate, remind yourself of one very important thing -- IT'S FICTION.

Having said that, I'll venture a guess and say that this movie, like most movies based on books or video games, will suck. Speaking of which, anyone who hasn't seen Max Payne (the movie) yet -- don't. What a pathetic waste of time.

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Boffin

Cryptonomicon vs Digital Fortress

Neal Stephenson's 'Cryptonomicon' is indeed a masterpiece. Unsurprising since Mr Stephenson is in fact a Unix hacker himself. (see 'In the beginning, there was the command line')

I think I remember briefly looking at a copy of Digital Fortress in a bookshop ... I quick glance through the first few pages was enough to see it slotted back on the shelf and forgotten.

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Paris Hilton

Dan Brown

I've never read any of his books but I hereby roundly condemn his writing as utter drivel based purely on the sheer volume of "non-readers" who have asked my opinion of it.

Top Tip! To really piss off reverent note-taking Dan Brown fan types at the movies: buy a ticket for the movie, making sure to take a book or some other form of personal entertainment for the duration. When the credits roll, stand up and yawn, then proclaim loudly: "well it was alright, but it's no Harry Potter."

In conclusion: spunkbubble.

Paris because mumble mumble, IQ in the shoe size range, something something, spat them out etc. etc.

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@ Stevie

Nice one!

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Il Papa / Le Pape

I believe his proper title is actually Darth Ratzinger.

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cor
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Having actually read all the comments..

.. I don't have a lot to add.

Except that a self-inflated factually dubious lie based on another self-inflated factually dubious lie, added to some appalling writing and epic fail science, will never ever ever result in a good piece of work.

I'm guessing the poop said NO, mainly because even he has limits when it comes to bad taste.

- Cormac

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Anonymous Coward

Scuppering?

It's already been scuppered. Have you seen the book? Should get an award for most inane plot ever.

On a different note, please could someone tell me why my Mac wants to replace scuppering with Scuppernong?

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It worked you suckers!!!!

He only mouthed off to drum up publicity for his lac-lustre production, get people talking and guess what? You lot going on about it, it has worked a treat!

Well done Ron, great work!

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