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Catholic church considers 'Da Vinci Code' boycott call
Latest Updated by 2006-05-19 09:46:09
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The Chinese Catholic church is considering calling on all believers to boycott "The Da Vinci Code." It accuses the Hollywood movie of violating religious ethics and morals, and insulting the feelings of the clergy and followers.

"The movie has many details that go against Catholic teachings or are even insulting," said Liu Bainian, vice-president of the China Patriotic Catholic Association, in an exclusive interview with Xinhua News Agency yesterday.

"The association and the Bishops Conference of the Chinese Catholic Church are considering sending a notice to believers not to watch it," he said.

Ron Howard's adaptation of Dan Brown's bestseller, starring Tom Hanks, has enraged religious groups worldwide because of its suggestion that Jesus married and fathered children, and that elements within the Catholic Church resorted to murder to hide the truth.

It premiered in Beijing on Wednesday night, beating the official Cannes debut by hours.

Describing the movie as a "test" of the faith of Catholics, Liu asked the followers to "consolidate their belief, abide by the instruction of the church and not to be affected by this fiction."

Jinde Weekly, sponsored by the China Patriotic Catholic Association's branch in Hebei Province, is already urging Catholics in a letter published on its website to boycott the movie.

Because the movie and the novel it is based on have greatly offended the Christian faith, it said, "we call on all the netizens, priests and followers to resist them."

Zhang Shijiang, editor-in-chief of Jinde, said he was confident that all Christians, not just Catholics, would boycott the film.

With a stellar cast and a controversial plot, the movie is expected to be a blockbuster because of the novel's worldwide record sales of 40 million copies.

Xu Bing, a spokesman for the China Film Group Corporation, the film's China distributor, estimated it would reap more than 60 million yuan (US$7.5 million) in China. Ticket prices range from 45 yuan (US$5.6) to 120 yuan (US$15) at Beijing's UME International Cineplex on the first day of the general release today.

Editor: Yan

By: Source: China View website
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