or


[08/12/05 - 12:00 AM]
Pope John Paul Ii (Working Title), a New Four-Hour Mini-Series Event Starring Academy Award Winner Jon Voight and Cary Elwes, Has Started Production in Krakow, Poland, and Will Later Film in Rome, Italy, for Broadcast on the CBS Television Network

[via press release from CBS]

(PLEASE NOTE: Jon Voight replaces the previously announced Ian Holm, who departed the project for personal reasons.)

"POPE JOHN PAUL II" (WORKING TITLE), A NEW FOUR-HOUR MINI-SERIES EVENT STARRING ACADEMY AWARD WINNER JON VOIGHT AND CARY ELWES, HAS STARTED PRODUCTION IN KRAKOW, POLAND, AND WILL LATER FILM IN ROME, ITALY, FOR BROADCAST ON THE CBS TELEVISION NETWORK

Academy Award and Emmy Award Nominee James Cromwell, Emmy Award Winner and Tony Award Nominee Ben Gazzara, Golden Globe Award Nominee Franco Nero and Charles Dance Also Star in This Drama Being Shot on Location in the Pope's Homeland And Near the Vatican in Rome

Historians at the Vatican Provided Script Consultation, and Exclusive Footage Has Been Filmed on St. Peter's Square And Surrounding Areas

POPE JOHN PAUL II (working title), a new four-hour mini-series event based on the remarkable life of Pope John Paul II, has started production in Krakow, Poland, and will later film in Rome, Italy, for broadcast on the CBS Television Network. Cary Elwes ("Princess Bride," "Saw") portrays Karol Wojtyla in his adult years prior to being elected Pope on Oct. 16, 1978, and Academy Award winner and multiple Golden Globe Award winner Jon Voight ("Coming Home," "Runaway Train") plays him during his extraordinary 26-year reign that ended with his death on April 2, 2005.

Historians at the Vatican provided script consultation, and exclusive footage has been filmed for the mini-series on St. Peter's Square and surrounding areas.

Academy Award nominee and Emmy Award nominee James Cromwell ("Babe," "Six Feet Under," "ER"), Emmy Award winner and Tony Award nominee Ben Gazzara ("Hysterical Blindness," "An Early Frost," "Run for Your Life"), Golden Globe Award nominee Franco Nero ("Camelot," "Die Hard 2") and Charles Dance ("Gosford Park," "Alien´┐Ż") also star in this drama about a man whose papal odyssey encompassed more than 120 countries and earned him the reputation of an international fighter for freedom. It follows Karol Wojtyla's journey from his youth in Poland through his late days on the Chair of St. Peter. It explores the 264th Pope's fascinating life behind the scenes: how he managed to touch the hearts of millions of people and change the face of the church and the world; how he defended the dignity of mankind against all kinds of Totalitarianism -- from Nazism to Communism to consumerism; and who successfully related to people of all ages.

The production begins with flashbacks to the young Karol "Lolek" Wojtyla whose faith and values are initially fostered by his loving, devout parents, who, along with Karol's elder brother, die of natural causes by the time Karol is 20 years old. Despite being on his own at a young age and enduring the effects of the Nazi occupation in Poland, the philosophical Karol remains optimistic that he can and must make a difference. Along with his university friends, Karol initially embraces the world of theater, acting in clandestine plays as a means of retaining his beloved Polish culture in spite of the risks involved. In the midst of the chaos surrounding him as ongoing atrocities are suffered by Polish Jews, academics, religious leaders and others, Karol accepts a calling to become a priest.

Karol's training takes place in an underground seminary run by the Archbishop Sapieha (Cromwell), a defiant force for the people of Krakow under the Nazi occupation who becomes Karol's mentor and involves the young man in the resistance movement. After being ordained a priest by Sapieha, now a Cardinal, Karol completes his graduate studies in Rome and returns to Poland, where he's assigned to become a student chaplain at St. Florian's parish in Krakow. The athletic 28-year-old Fr. Karol Wojtyla immediately bonds with the university students who savor his relaxed approach and join him to kayak to his inspiring Masses in the wilderness away from the watchful eyes of the communist authorities.

When Karol is only 38-years-old, the Holy See appoints him Auxiliary Bishop of Krakow. Continuing to cultivate faith with the people, despite the restrictions imposed by the communist leaders, Karol chooses to hold Mass in an open area in the communists' new Polish church-free city, Nowa Huta. Though he repeatedly enrages the communist authorities, he impresses influential foreign cardinals with his views, his charisma and his knowledge of multiple languages. At 47, Karol is made a cardinal by Pope Paul VI, and, on Oct. 16, 1978, after 455 years of Italian popes, Karol is elected Pope, at age 58, and takes the name John Paul II.

During his extremely active papal years, most of which take place after he survives a 1981 assassination attempt, John Paul II proves to be a less-than-traditional pope. He takes part in international negotiations and presses Soviet leadership to remove obstacles to freedom of religion in the countries under their control. He travels across the globe to promote faith, values, peace, forgiveness, and, especially in regions lacking it, freedom of religion. He asks for forgiveness and brotherhood with the Jewish people and reaches out to the world's Catholic youth. During John Paul II's first pilgrimage to Poland in June 1979, he ushers in an era of hope that motivates the Polish people, and their Solidarity leadership, to eventually bring a hard-fought end to communist rule there. This passion ultimately spreads throughout the rest of the Eastern block as well. Despite health obstacles in later years, John Paul II refuses to curtail his busy schedule. He continues to challenge and inspire millions of people throughout his later life, his lengthy illness and during his last days which he lived with faith, peace and courage.

Gazzara plays Vatican Secretary of State Agostino Casaroli, Dance portrays Austrian Cardinal Franz Konig and Nero plays Jan Tyranowski, an influential lay leader in the clandestine Catholic ministry that sprouted in Krakow during the Nazi occupation.

POPE JOHN PAUL II (working title) is being produced by Matilde and Luca Bernabei for Lux Vide ("Jesus"), Max Gusberti for RAI Fiction, Stephen Davis ("Rudy: The Rudy Giuliani Story"), Tarak Ben Amar ("The Bible") for Quinta Communications, Chris Grabowski and Slawomir Jozwik for Baltmedia/Projektor. John Kent-Harrison ("The Hallmark Hall of Fame" presentations "What the Deaf Man Heard," "In Love and War," "The Water Is Wide," "William Faulkner's Old Man") is directing.





  [august 2005]  
S
M
T
W
T
F
S
 


· ER (NBC)
· HYSTERICAL BLINDNESS (HBO)
· JESUS (CBS)
· POPE JOHN PAUL II (CBS)
· RUDY! (USA)
· SIX FEET UNDER (HBO)
· WATER IS WIDE (CBS)





[12/12/17 - 11:15 AM]
TLC's "My 600-lb Life" Returns with New Season Followed by New Series "Family by the Ton"
The addictive TLC series returns for its sixth season on Wednesday, January 10 at 8:00/7:00c.

[12/12/17 - 11:12 AM]
The CW Presents "EA Madden NFL 18 Challenge" Premiering December 27
The special special will chronicle the exhilarating competitive action of the tournament and highlight the behind the scenes journeys of the eight world-class players as they compete in the Madden NFL 18 Challenge.

[12/12/17 - 10:54 AM]
Bravo Media Mixes Business with Friendship in The New Series "Bethenny & Fredrik" Premiering Tuesday, February 6 at 10PM ET/PT
Bethenny has been Fredrik's client and friend, and now they're taking their friendship to new heights by coming together as real estate moguls and business partners.

[12/12/17 - 10:31 AM]
NBC Set to Air the 70th Primetime Emmy(R) Awards on Monday, Sept. 17 Live from the Microsoft Theater at L.A. Live
A host and producers will be announced at a later date.

[12/12/17 - 10:03 AM]
"Homeland" Season Seven to Premiere on Showtime(R) on Sunday, February 11 at 9 PM ET/PT
Starring Claire Danes and Mandy Patinkin, the cast of series regulars also includes returning actors Elizabeth Marvel, Linus Roache, Maury Sterling and Jake Weber, and joining the cast this season is acclaimed actor Morgan Spector.

[12/12/17 - 10:02 AM]
Official "Black Lightning" Key Art Now Available
The newcomer premieres premieres Tuesday, January 16 at 9:00/8:00c on The CW.

[12/12/17 - 10:01 AM]
Crime's Most Chilling Conversations Caught on Camera in Discovery's All-New Series "The Interrogation Room"
From home invasions to murders, the series covers all facets of crime and the clever tactics used by detectives to obtain criminal confessions.

[12/12/17 - 09:32 AM]
Destination America Celebrates "12 Nights of A Haunting," Ending with a Never-Before-Seen Episode of "Kindred Spirits"
Tune in every night from Wednesday, December 20 - Sunday, December 31 for a primetime marathon of "A Haunting."

[12/12/17 - 09:26 AM]
Science Channel Journeys Deeper Into the Inner Workings of the Cosmos in a New Season of Longest Running Space Series "How the Universe Works" Premiering January 9 at 10PM ET/PT
The series is back for its sixth season as astronomers and experts examine the building blocks and inner workings of our universe to better understand outer space and how its many puzzle pieces fit together.

[12/12/17 - 08:47 AM]
Adult Swim Brings the Heat this Winter with the Premiere of "Hot Streets"
The quarter-hour animated science fiction adventure series centers around FBI Agent Mark Branski, his partner, his niece, and her dog, who investigate supernatural phenomena.

[12/12/17 - 08:37 AM]
Video: WE tv Reveals a Dramatic Sneak Peek of the Highly Anticipated Second Season of "Growing Up Hip Hop Atlanta"
The heirs of Atlanta hip hop are back, on the new season, and testing the legacy of family and the code of the streets.

[12/12/17 - 08:16 AM]
Monday's Broadcast Ratings: "The Voice" Keeps NBC on Top in Viewers, Demos
The Peacock holds off the competition in both categories last night.

[12/12/17 - 08:00 AM]
SundanceTV's Hailed Anthology Series Returns March 7 at 10p/9c for Its Third Installment - "Hap and Leonard: The Two-Bear Mambo"
The six-part drama, takes inspiration from the third installment of the popular book series, "The Two-Bear Mambo," by famed author Joe R. Lansdale.

[12/12/17 - 07:36 AM]
Video: Go Behind the Scenes of "Marvel's The Punisher"
Go behind the scenes with Frank Castle and the cast of "Marvel's The Punisher" in a newly released featurette.

[12/12/17 - 07:30 AM]
Science Channel Goes Big with Two New Engineering Series Premering on January 4
"Building Giants" and "Mega Machines" will air back-to-back starting at 9:00/8:00c.