The Da Vinci Code

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Posted by r2d2 03/13/2009 @ 12:07

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'Angels & Demons' to close Shanghai fest - Hollywood Reporter
"The Da Vinci Code" was released in China, although films with religious themes are not always approved for distribution. Sony is backing up its bid by bringing in top talent including Ewan McGregor, co-star Ayelet Zurer and Michael Rosenberg,...
Angels & Demons: Now, in the service of the Catholic Church - World Socialist Web Site
By Hiram Lee Angels & Demons is the sequel to the 2006 blockbuster The Da Vinci Code. It reunites director Ron Howard and actor Tom Hanks for their fourth film together and also marks the first time Howard, the former child star, has made a sequel to...
Books, Interrupted: Téa Obreht Ditches Nabokov for Dan Brown - New Yorker
I took advantage of his absence by reading the back flap and first two pages of “The Da Vinci Code.” When he came back he reached over and, with total nonchalance, without so much as a nod to me, took “Lolita” from where it was lying under “The Firm”...
The endless journey of man to find immortality might just be found ... - HotIndieNews.com
Gotham Magazine: “Valoppi tackles the conflict between science and religion in a riveting read that recalls The Da Vinci Code. Merging nanotechnology with ancient Judeo-Christian prophesies, Valoppi sends readers on a fictional chase through our...
Movie review: 'Da Vinci Code' fans will like 'Angels and Demons' - Santa Ynez Valley News
By Jennifer Iverson/Contributor "Angels and Demons,” based on a novel written prior to Dan Brown's enormously successful best-seller “The Da Vinci Code,” follows the continuing story of Brown's Professor Robert Langdon, the “Da Vinci's Code”...
The Da Vinci Code chapel Roslin, Midlothian: Walk ID 2652 - guardian.co.uk
The crowing glory of the walk is the finish point at Rosslyn chapel, famously "outed" as the final resting place of the Holy Grail by the 2003 blockbuster The Da Vinci Code. Construction of this exquisite jewellery box of a building began in the...
MOVIE REVIEW: 'Angels & Demons' succeeds where 'Da Vinci Code' failed - Carlisle Independent
Although Brown's novel “Angels & Demons” preceded “Da Vinci Code,” the filmmakers transform the tale into a sequel, thereby enabling screenwriters Akiva Goldsman (who scripted “Da Vinci Code") and David Koepp (whose credits include popcorn smashes from...
Film Series and Movie Listings - New York Times
Better than “The Da Vinci Code,” if that's saying anything. (AO Scott) ★ 'DRAG ME TO HELL' (PG-13, 1:36) Sam Raimi returns to his goofy, gooey roots with this battle between a cursed loan officer (Alison Lohman) and a milky-eyed crone with yellow...
Da Vinci before 'the code' - Argonaut
Leonardo da Vinci has always been one of the world's most famous artists, and since the publication and production of “The Da Vinci Code” his name has become even more recognizable. Prior to “The Da Vinci Code,” he was known mainly for his painting,...
Duh Vinci Code - Philippine Star
Having fallen asleep during a gripping stretch of the first hour of Ron Howard's sequel to The Da Vinci Code, I wasn't quite sure whether or not I had segued into another movie — Quantum of Solace, perhaps, or Mission Impossible 3....

The Da Vinci Code

DaVinciCode.jpg

The Da Vinci Code is a 2003 mystery-detective fiction novel written by American author Dan Brown and published by the Doubleday Group in the United States and Bantam Books in the United Kingdom. It follows symbologist Robert Langdon as he investigates a murder in Paris's Louvre Museum and discovers a battle between the Priory of Sion and Opus Dei over the possibility of Jesus Christ of Nazareth having been married to and fathering a child with Mary Magdalene.

The title of the novel refers to, among other things, the fact that the murder victim Jacques Sauniere is found in the Denon Wing of the Louvre, naked and posed like Leonardo da Vinci's famous drawing, the Vitruvian Man, with a cryptic message written beside his body and a pentacle drawn on his stomach in his own blood.

The novel has provoked a popular interest in speculation concerning the Holy Grail legend and Magdalene's role in the history of Christianity. The book has been extensively denounced by Roman Catholics and other Christians as a dishonest attack on the Catholic Church. It has also been criticized for historical and scientific inaccuracy.

Brown's novel was a major success in 2004 and was outsold only by J. K. Rowling's Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. It was the winner of Book Sense's 2004 Book of the Year Award in the Adult Fiction category. It spawned a number of offspring works and drew glowing reviews from The New York Times, People, and The Washington Post. It also reignited interest in the history of the Catholic Church. Additionally, The Da Vinci Code, itself preceded by other Grail books such as The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail by Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh, and Henry Lincoln; and Umberto Eco's Foucault's Pendulum, has inspired a number of novels very similar to it, including Raymond Khoury's The Last Templar and The Templar Legacy by Steve Berry. It also borrows heavily from Stuart Urban's 2001 film Revelation.

It is a worldwide bestseller that had 60.5 million copies in print by May 2006 and that has been translated into 44 languages. Combining the detective, thriller, and conspiracy fiction genres, the book is Brown's second to include the character Robert Langdon, the first being his 2000 novel Angels & Demons. In November 2004 Random House published a "Special Illustrated Edition" with 160 illustrations. In 2006, an eponymous film adaptation was released by Sony's Columbia Pictures.

This book describes the attempts of Robert Langdon, Professor of Religious Symbology at Harvard University, to solve the murder of renowned curator Jacques Saunière of the Louvre Museum in Paris. A baffling cipher is found near his body. Saunière's granddaughter, Sophie Neveu and Langdon attempt to sort out the bizarre riddles and are stunned to discover a trail of clues hidden in the works of Leonardo Da Vinci.

The unraveling of the mystery requires solutions to a series of brain-teasers, including anagrams and number puzzles. The ultimate solution is found to be intimately connected with the possible location of the Holy Grail and to a mysterious society called the Priory of Sion, as well as to the Knights Templar. The story also involves the Roman Catholic organization Opus Dei.

As explained by Leigh Teabing to Sophie Neveu, the figure at the right hand of Jesus is supposedly not the apostle John, but Mary Magdalene. According to the book, Mary Magdalene was the wife of Jesus Christ and was in fact pregnant with his child when Jesus was crucified. The absence of a chalice in the painting supposedly indicates that Leonardo knew that Mary Magdalene was actually the Holy Grail (the bearer of Jesus' blood). This is said to be reinforced by the letter "V" that is created with the bodily positions of Jesus and Mary, as "V" is the symbol for the sacred feminine. The apparent absence of the "Apostle John", under this interpretation, is explained by identifying John as "the Disciple Jesus loved", allegedly code for Mary Magdalene (see also Second Apocalypse of James). The book also notes that the color scheme of their garments are inverted: Jesus wears a red blouse with royal blue cape; John/Mary wears a royal blue blouse with red cape — perhaps symbolizing two bonded halves of marriage. Also, if one moves John's/Mary's body to the left of Jesus, one will see that John's/Mary's head fits perfectly onto Jesus' shoulder, as if to affectionately lay that head on his shoulder.

A number of different authors also speculate about the possibility of Jesus becoming a father. There are at least three children attributed to him, a daughter Tamar, born before the Crucifixion, and two sons Jesus (the Jesus Justus from the New Testament) and Josephes, both born after the Resurrection. Although their names are now part of the common culture of conspiracy writers, only two decades ago, when The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail was written, the names were not mentioned. The royal descents that lie at the heart of The Da Vinci Code mystery centre on the family of Josephes, who is supposed to be the grandfather of Aminadab del Graal, first of the "Fisher Kings". However the genealogies that are quoted in Grail lore appear to record too few generations, with children regularly being born to fathers in their 40s.

Part of the advertising campaign for the novel was that the artwork in the American version of the bookjacket held various codes, and that the reader who solved them via the author's website would be given a prize. Several thousand people actually solved the codes, and one name was randomly chosen to be the winner, with the name announced on live television, Good Morning America, in early 2004. The prize was a trip to Paris.

Brown, both via his website and in person, has stated that the puzzles in the bookjacket give hints about the subject of his next novel, The Solomon Key. This repeats a theme from his earlier novels. For example, Deception Point had an encrypted message which, when solved, said, "The Da Vinci Code will surface".

In the simplified Chinese version of The Da Vinci Code, the cover has a secret text; however, this text can be easily seen. It reads: "13-3-2-1-1-8-5 O, Draconian devil! Oh, Lame Saint! P.S. Find Robert Langdon." This is the multiply encrypted clue written in invisible ink next to the dead body in the museum which kicks off the plot of the entire novel.

Brown has reworked themes and characters from his own earlier novel Angels and Demons, specifically the main character, Robert Langdon.

European readers and critics noted some striking similarities between the "Da Vinci Code" and a Norwegian novel, "Sirkelens ende" ("Circle's End") by Tom Egeland, published in 2001 (two years before the Da Vinci code). Like the "Da Vinci Code", "Circle's End" involves an ancient mystery and a worldwide conspiracy, the discovery that Jesus was married to Mary Magdalene, and an albino as one of the central characters. In both novels, the main female character turns out to be a living descendant of Christ and Mary Magdalene, and the daughter/granddaughter of the last grand master of a secret order. Many European readers have speculated that Dan Brown had plagiarized Tom Egeland's book. Since the Norwegian novel has not been translated into English, it is generally assumed today that the similarities between the two books, although striking, are coincidental. The author himself, Tom Egeland, has in numerous interviews in European media dismissed the claim of Brown's novel plagiarizing his own novel, stating that the similarities just show that he and Brown more or less have done the same research and found the same sources.

Umberto Eco's earlier Foucault's Pendulum similarly concerns itself with the Knights Templar, complex conspiracies, secret codes, the Holy Blood conundrum (if mentioned only in passing) and even includes a chase around the monuments of Paris. It does so, however, from a much more critical perspective: it's more a satire on the futility of conspiracy theories and those who believe them, rather than an attempt to proliferate such beliefs. Foucault's Pendulum has been dubbed "the thinking person's Da Vinci Code". The former is itself, in turn, highly reminiscent in plot, theme and structure, of the Illuminatus! trilogy by Robert Shea and Robert Anton Wilson, which had appeared 13 years earlier.

Opus Dei was cast in the role of the "evil opposition", used to destroy and degrade the bloodline -- although by the end of the book this portrayal is greatly softened. Since the bloodline has never been confirmed as real but merely a theory proposed in The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail, there is no direct inspiration for this. Opus Dei's controversial reputation permitted Brown to feature the organisation prominently. On a symbolic level, the Priory of Sion (male and female membership and leadership, "good") and the Opus Dei (male-only leaders, "bad") are at opposite sides of the scale. The latter is thus depicted as the attack dog of the Catholic Church, seeking to destroy the former and maintain the status quo. According to the novel, man needs woman for wholeness and, in fact, for experiencing the divine by means of sex (see the Hieros Gamos ritual)--for example, in one's orgasm, there is a short period of time when a person's mind is completely empty, when one makes contact with God.

The book generated criticism when it was first published, due to speculations and misrepresentations of core aspects of Christianity, the history of the Catholic Church, and descriptions of European art, history, and architecture. The book has received mostly negative reviews from Catholic and other Christian communities.

Many critics say that Brown should have done a lot more research before publishing this book.

On February 22, 2004, an article titled "The Last Word: The Da Vinci Con" appeared in the New York Times by writer Laura Miller. Miller attacks the Da Vinci Code on multiple levels, referring to it as "based on a notorious hoax", "rank nonsense", and "bogus", as she points out how heavily the book rests on the fabrications of Pierre Plantard (including the Priory of Sion which did not exist until Plantard created it) who in 1953 was arrested and convicted for just such frauds.

The book opens with the claim by Dan Brown that "The Priory of Sion — a European secret society founded in 1099 — is a real organization" and that "all descriptions of artwork, architecture, documents ... and secret rituals in this novel are accurate"; but this claim is disputed by almost all academic scholars in the fields the book discusses. The Priory of Sion itself was not a real secret society established in 1099 but actually a hoax created in 1956 by a Mr. Pierre Plantard.

Numerous works have been published that explain in detail why any claim to accuracy is difficult to substantiate, while two lawsuits have been brought alleging plagiarism in The Da Vinci Code. The first suit for copyright infringement was filed in February 2006 in a British court by the authors of The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail, a purportedly nonfiction account of Mary Magdalene's role as the wife of Jesus of Nazareth and the mother of his child, was found in Dan Brown's favor. No verdict has yet been rendered on a second suit, filed in August of the same year, in the United States by Jack Dunn, the author of The Vatican Boys.

A third author, Lewis Perdue, alleged that Brown plagiarized from two of his novels, The Da Vinci Legacy, originally published in 1983, and Daughter of God, originally published in the year 2000. He sought to block distribution of the book and film. However, Judge George Daniels of the US District Court in New York ruled against Perdue in 2005, saying that "A reasonable average lay observer would not conclude that The Da Vinci Code is substantially similar to Daughter of God" and that "Any slightly similar elements are on the level of generalised or otherwise unprotectable ideas." Perdue appealed, the 2nd US Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the original decision, saying Mr Perdue's arguments were "without merit".

Dan Brown himself dilutes the suggestion of some of the more controversial aspects being fact on his web site: "The "FACT" page makes no statement whatsoever about any of the ancient theories discussed by fictional characters. Interpreting those ideas is left to the reader". However, it also says that "these real elements are interpreted and debated by fictional characters", "it is my belief that some of the theories discussed by these characters may have merit." and "the secret behind The Da Vinci Code was too well documented and significant for me to dismiss." It is therefore entirely understandable why there would continue to be confusion as to what is the factual content of the book.

Brown's earlier statements about the accuracy of the historical information in his book, however, were far more strident. In 2003, while promoting his novel, he was asked in interviews what parts of the history in his novel actually happened. He replied "Absolutely all of it." In a 2003 interview with CNN's Martin Savidge he was again asked how much of the historical background was true. He replied, "99% is true ... the background is all true". Asked by Elizabeth Vargas in an ABC News special if the book would have been different if he had written it as non-fiction he replied, "I don't think it would have." More recently Brown has avoided interviews and has been rather more circumspect about the accuracy of his claims in his few public statements. He has also, however, never retracted any of his earlier assertions that the history in the novel is accurate, despite substantial academic criticism of his claims.

In 2005, UK TV personality Tony Robinson edited and narrated a detailed rebuttal of the main arguments of Dan Brown and those of Baigent, Leigh and Lincoln, "The Real Da Vinci Code", shown on British TV Channel 4. The program featured lengthy interviews with many of the main protagonists cited by Brown as "absolute fact" in The Da Vinci Code. Arnaud de Sède, son of Gérard de Sède, stated categorically that his father and Plantard had made up the existence of the Prieuré de Sion, the cornerstone of the Jesus bloodline theory - to quote Arnaud de Sede in the program, "frankly, it was piffle". The program also cast severe doubt on the Rosslyn Chapel association with the Grail and on other related stories like the alleged landing of Mary Magdalene in France.

According to The Da Vinci Code, the Roman Emperor Constantine I suppressed Gnosticism because it portrayed Jesus as purely human. The novel's argument is as follows. Constantine wanted Christianity to act as a unifying religion for the Roman Empire. He thought Christianity would appeal to pagans only if it featured a demigod similar to pagan heroes. According to the Gnostic Gospels, Jesus was merely a human prophet, not a demigod. Therefore, to change Jesus' image, Constantine destroyed the Gnostic Gospels and promoted the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, which portray Jesus as divine or semidivine.

In fact, Gnosticism did not portray Jesus as merely human. Some Gnostic writings do depict Jesus interacting with his disciples in a wholly human way, one example being the Gospel of Mary, but the general Gnostic depiction of Jesus is not clear-cut. Many Gnostic writings depict Christ as purely divine, his human body being a mere illusion (see Docetism). Some Gnostic sects saw Christ this way because they regarded matter as evil, and therefore believed that a divine spirit would never have taken on a material body.

The book was parodied by Adam Roberts with The Va Dinci Cod, and by Toby Clements with the Asti Spumante Code.

The book was parodied in the ABC's Da Kath & Kim Code.

The BBC program Dead Ringers parodied the Da Vinci Code, calling it the Da Rolf Harris Code.

Popular South African political cartoonist Zapiro published a book collection of his strips entitled Da Zuma Code which parodies the former deputy president Jacob Zuma.

The book was parodied in the South Park episode "Fantastic Easter Special".

A parody of the book was included in the film Epic Movie.

It was parodied by the show American Dad in the episode "Black Mystery Month" where Stan finds a conspiracy in the creation of peanut butter.

In 2008 it was parodied in the second series of That Mitchell and Webb Look as "The Numberwang Code", a trailer for a fictional film based on a recurring sketch on the show.

The book has been translated into over 40 languages, primarily in hardcover. Alternate formats include audio cassette, CD, and e-book. Most recently, a Trade Paperback edition was released March 2006 in conjunction with the film.

Sophie's access code for her voice mail is 454, the number of pages of the novel in many of its formats. In the Mass Market US Paperback, the page 155 has "SOS" as a page number.

Sony's Columbia Pictures has adapted the novel to film, with a screenplay written by Akiva Goldsman, and Academy Award winner Ron Howard directing. The film was released on May 19, 2006, and stars Tom Hanks as Robert Langdon, Audrey Tautou as Sophie Neveu, and Sir Ian McKellen as Leigh Teabing. The film had an opening weekend gross of $77,073,388. By the end of 2006, it had grossed about $244 million in the U.S. alone and has done very well in other markets, grossing over $700,000,000 worldwide, making it the second highest grossing movie of 2006. On November 14, 2006 the movie was released on DVD.

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The Da Vinci Code (film)

The da vinci code.jpg

The Da Vinci Code is a 2006 feature film, which is based on the bestselling 2003 novel The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown. It was one of the most anticipated films of 2006, and was previewed at the opening night of the Cannes Film Festival on May 17, 2006. The Da Vinci Code then entered major release in many other countries on May 18, 2006 and was released in the United States by Columbia Pictures on May 19, 2006.

Because of some controversial interpretations and factual inaccuracies of Christian history in both the book and movie, they were criticized by the Roman Catholic Church. Some bishops urged members to boycott the film. Many of the early showings were accompanied by protesters outside the movie theaters, and early critical reviews were decidedly mixed. However, in its opening weekend, the film earned over US$224 million worldwide, second only to the opening of 2005's Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith. It is the second highest grossing movie of 2006 worldwide—having reached US$758,239,851 as of November 2, 2006, making it both Tom Hanks' and Ron Howard's most successful film. The film's soundtrack, composed by Hans Zimmer, was nominated for the 2007 Golden Globe Award for Best Original Score.

A man revealed to be Jacques Saunière is pursued by a mysterious hooded character known as Silas through the Grand Gallery in the Louvre. Silas demands the location of the Priory's clef de voûte or "keystone." Under threat of death, Saunière finally confesses the keystone is kept in the sacristy of Church of Saint-Sulpice, "beneath the Rose." Silas thanks him, and then shoots him in the stomach.

Meanwhile, American symbologist Robert Langdon (Tom Hanks), who is in Paris as an AUP guest lecturer on Symbols and the sacred feminine, is contacted by the French police, and summoned to the Louvre to view the crime scene. He discovers the dying Saunière had created an intricate display using black light ink and his own body and blood. Captain Bezu Fache (Jean Reno) asks him for his interpretation of the puzzling scene.

Silas calls a mysterious man known as The Teacher, revealing that he has killed all four protectors of the keystone and that all confirmed the same location. He dons a metal cilice on his thigh and proceeds to flagellate himself with a whip for the sins of murder. Facilitated by Bishop Manuel Aringarosa, Silas then travels to Saint-Sulpice and is admitted by an elderly nun; left alone, he excavates beneath the floor of the church to find a stone saying only JOB 38:11. He confronts the nun, who quotes the passage: "Hitherto shalt thou come, but no further." Realizing that he has been deceived, Silas is enraged and kills the nun.

Sophie Neveu (Audrey Tautou), a cryptologist with the French police, enters the Louvre as well and slips Langdon a message which leads him to go to the men's room. There, Sophie meets him and tells him that he is being tracked, a GPS tracking dot has been (unknown by him) slipped into his jacket and that he is a primary suspect in the murder case because of a line of text found by the corpse (P.S. find Robert Langdon). Sophie however, believes that Saunière, who is revealed to be her grandfather, wanted to pass a hidden message on to her, and that he had wanted to bring Langdon into the equation so that he could help her crack the code.

Having bought some time by removing the tracking device, the pair begin exploring the Louvre, finding more anagram messages that Saunière had left behind. Many of these relate to Leonardo Da Vinci's art, and the pair find a key with a Fleur-de-lis behind Madonna of the Rocks.

Pursued by the French Police and cut off from the United States Embassy, the pair escape to the Bois de Boulogne where Langdon closely inspects the key. He notices an inscription on the side -- an address. The address directs them to the Depository Bank of Zurich where the key is used for a safety deposit box.

In the bank, they find Saunière's deposit box and open it using the 10 digit Fibonacci numbers in order (1123581321). Inside the box, they find a rosewood container, which contains a cryptex: a cylindrical container with five alphabetical dials which must be arranged in the correct sequence to spell out a 5-letter code word, in order to open and access the parchment message inside. Using force to open the cryptex would break a vial of vinegar inside, which would dissolve the parchment and destroy the message.

Unfortunately, the police are called by a security guard and they are forced to leave. The bank manager, Andre Vernet, assists them in escaping by taking them as passengers in an armoured truck to escape the routine checks of the police. In the back of the truck Langdon and Neveu have a lengthy discussion about the cryptex and Neveu says that her grandfather often played games with her involving cryptexes. Langdon says that the cryptex might hold valuable information or another clue about what they are trying to discover. Eventually, they come to a sudden stop and Vernet forces them at gunpoint to give him the cryptex. Langdon tricks Vernet and disarms him and he and Sophie escape.

Langdon suggests that they visit his friend, Leigh Teabing (Sir Ian McKellen), for assistance to opening the cryptex. Leigh Teabing turns out to be an enthusiastic seeker of the Holy Grail, which he believes is not actually a cup but instead Mary Magdalene, the wife of Christ, who was driven away because Jesus's followers didn't want to follow a woman after their leader was killed. Mary was pregnant at the time, and Teabing tells Sophie that a secret society was formed to protect the descendants of Jesus. Jacques Saunière was believed to be a part of this society and Teabing suspects that he was training Sophie to join it also. Silas, meanwhile, breaks into Teabing's mansion and attempts to steal the cryptex. Teabing uses his cane to knock Silas out and they escape again, taking the butler, Remy Jean, and Silas with them. The group escapes in Teabing's plane.

It is revealed that Remy Jean is actually a follower of The Teacher as well, however he is killed by the mysterious man after freeing Silas. Silas is attacked by the police and, in the ensuing gunfire, accidentally shoots Bishop Manuel Aringarosa. In his grief, Silas dies in police-assisted suicide and Aringarosa is taken to the hospital, as well as being arrested by Fache for betraying him. As Langdon gets closer to solving the mystery, he is betrayed by Teabing, who is revealed to be The Teacher. Teabing explained that he wanted to find Mary Magdalene's remains to prove he was correct about the Holy Grail and threatens to shoot Sophie if Langdon does not crack the code. Langdon responds by throwing the cryptex into the air. Teabing runs to catch it, but cannot, and it hits the ground. The vial of vinegar breaks and apparently spreads onto the document, destroying it. Teabing is arrested, however it is revealed that Langdon had cracked the code ('Apple') and removed the clue from the cryptex before throwing it at Teabing. Using the clue, they travel to a church where Magdalene's remains had previously been hidden. There, they meet other members of the secret organization that protected her. It is revealed that Sophie is actually Magdalene's descendant and therefore is the current living descendant of Jesus Christ. They vow to keep her safe. Langdon and Sophie part ways shortly after.

At his hotel, Langdon accidentally cuts himself and the line of blood on the sink reminds him of the Rose Line. He follows the Rose Line and finds the location of the Holy Grail, buried under the pyramid in the Louvre. Langdon then kneels above Mary Magdalene's tomb as the Templar Knights did before him.

The film rights were purchased from Dan Brown for $6,000,000. Filming had been scheduled to start in May 2005; however, some delays caused filming to begin on June 30, 2005.

Permission to film on the premises was granted to the film by the Louvre (although, since the crew was not permitted to shine light on the Mona Lisa, a replica was used instead, whilst the film crew used the Mona Lisa's chamber as a storage room), while Westminster Abbey denied the use of its premises, as did Saint-Sulpice. The Westminster Abbey scenes were instead filmed at Lincoln Cathedral and Winchester Cathedral, both belonging to the Church of England.

Due to the denial of a location permit for Saint-Sulpice the entire scene had to be recreated virtually by Rainmaker U.K and though the set had been partially built, the co-ordinates were centimeters out from what the compositors had expected and so the entire process was extremely difficult to complete.

Lincoln reportedly received £100,000 in exchange for the right to film there, with filming there occurring between 15 and 19 August 2005, mainly within the cloisters of the cathedral. The Cathedral's bell "Great Tom", which strikes the hour, was silent for the first time since World War II during that time. Although it remained a closed set, protesters led by the 61-year-old Roman Catholic nun Sister Mary Michael from Our Lady's Community of Peace and Mercy in Lincoln demonstrated against the filming, spending 12 hours praying on her knees outside the cathedral in protest against what she sees as the blasphemous use of a holy place to film a book which she considers to contain heresy.

Meanwhile Winchester answered criticism by using its location fee to fund an exhibition, lecture series and campaign to debunk the book. The scenes for the Pope's summer residence, Castel Gandolfo were filmed on location at Belvoir Castle in Leicestershire.

Filming also took place elsewhere in the UK (London, including the concert hall in the Fairfield Halls, Croydon, the Temple Church, and Burghley House), Rosslyn Chapel, Scotland and in France and Germany.

The filmmakers also shot many of the internal scenes at Pinewood Studios: the film's opening sequence was filmed in the cavernous Albert R. Broccoli's 007 Stage at Pinewood Shepperton, where the interior of the Louvre was recreated, away from the priceless paintings in the actual museum in France.

In the film's opening sequence, Robert Langdon, played by Tom Hanks, is taken by French police to the Louvre, where a dead body has been discovered. David White of Altered States FX, a prosthetics and special makeup effects company which is based at London's Shepperton Studios was tasked with creating a naked photo-realistic silicone body for the scene. (Lighting effects, however, were utilized to obscure the body's genitalia, a technique also used on television programmes such as NCIS).

Pinewood's state-of-the-art Underwater Stage was used to film underwater sequences. The stage opened in 2005 after four years of planning and development. The water in the tank is filtered using an ultraviolet system which creates crystal clear water, and the water is maintained at 30°C (87°F) to create a comfortable environment to work in for both cast and crew. Since the tank does not use much chlorine due to its optical properties, it must always be drained and refilled after several days.

Alternate versions of Paul Bettany's nude flagellation scenes were shot, in which he wears a black loincloth. Clips of these versions appear in the History Channel's "Opus Dei Unveiled" documentary, aired in summer 2006.

Cardinal Francis Arinze, in a documentary called "The Da Vinci Code: A Masterful Deception," urged unspecified legal action against the makers of the film. "Those who blaspheme Christ and get away with it are exploiting the Christian readiness to forgive and to love even those who insult us. There are some other religions which if you insult their founder they will not be just talking. They will make it painfully clear to you," Arinze said. He is Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments in the Vatican.

Stating that it does not intend to organize any boycotts, Opus Dei (the Catholic organization that is featured prominently in the novel and the film) released a statement on February 14, 2006 asking Sony Pictures to consider editing the soon-to-be-released film based on the bestseller, so that it would not contain references that it felt might be hurtful to Catholics. The statement also said Brown’s book offers a "deformed" image of the church and that Opus Dei will use the opportunity of the movie’s release to educate about the church.

According to a statement by Manuel Sánchez Hurtado, Opus Dei Press Office Rome, in contrast to Sony Corporation’s published "Code of Conduct" the company has announced that the film will not include such a disclaimer.

During a preview for movie critics in Cannes, the main climax of the film, when Robert Langdon (Tom Hanks) discloses to Sophie Neveu (Audrey Tautou) that she is "without a doubt" the "last living descendant of Jesus Christ," was met with thunderous laughter. Nearing the end of the screening, the conclusion of the movie was met with boos instead of the usual applause.

The National Organization for Albinism and Hypopigmentation (NOAH) has expressed concern about Silas' character giving people with albinism a bad name. However, the filmmakers did not change his appearance. See also evil albino.

Although the Da Vinci code was passed by Chinese censors, it was abruptly removed from public view in Mainland China, by order of the Chinese government, after "a remarkable run in China, grossing over $13 million". No explanation was given. Its last screening was made on 9 June 2006.

The biggest cinema in the Faroe Islands, Havnar Bio, decided to boycott the film, effectively blocking it from the other smaller cinemas, who rely on second-hand films from this source, because it seems to be blasphemous in their point of view. Havnar Bio is privately owned, and their decision is based on their own private opinion.

A private initiative by the individual Herluf Sørensen has arranged the movie to be played, despite the boycott by Havnar bio. The movie opened at the Nordic House in the Faroe Islands on the 5 June 2006.

The Philippine Alliance Against Pornography (PAAP) appealed to Philippine President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to stop the showing of The Da Vinci Code in the Philippines. They branded the film as "the most pornographic and blasphemous film in history" and also requested the help of Pope Benedict XVI, the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) and other religious groups to stop the showing of the film. In addition, they compared Dan Brown to Adolf Hitler.

However, Cecille Guidote Alvarez, Philippine Presidential Adviser on Culture and the Arts, said Malacañang will not interfere in controversy about the film and leaves the decision to the Movie and Television Classification Board's (MTRCB) rating. Eventually, MTRCB decided to give The Da Vinci Code an R-18 rating (restricted to those 18 years of age and over) despite PAAP's opposition for showing it.

Christian groups in this mostly Buddhist country protested the film and called for it to be banned. On May 16, 2006, the Thai Censorship Committee issued a ruling that the film would be shown, but that the last 10 minutes would be cut. Also, some Thai subtitles were to be edited to change their meaning and passages from the Bible would also be quoted at the beginning and end of the film.

However, the following day, Sony Pictures appealed the ruling, saying it would pull the film if the decision to cut it was not reversed. The censorship panel then voted 6-5 that the film could be shown uncut, but that a disclaimer would precede and follow the film, saying it was a work of fiction. This last-minute decision caused the premiere, opening-day showing of the movie to be delayed or cancelled in some provincial theatres as the updated film reels were shipped from Bangkok.

The National Council of Churches of Singapore (NCCS) wrote to Information, Communications and the Arts Minister to register their "strongest objection" to the release of the film and requested that it be banned. The Media Development Authority, however, passed the unedited version of the movie, albeit with an NC16 rating, a restriction for children below the age of 16.

The film was banned outright in Samoa after church leaders watching a pre-release showing filed a complaint to film censors.

There was a huge outcry in many states by the Christian minorities to ban the film from screening in India for the perceived anti-Christian message. This issue had even brought the minister responsible to view the film along with the senior Catholic representatives.

In the end, the movie was allowed to release without any cuts but with an A (Adults Only) certification from the Central Board for Film Certification and a 15-second Disclaimer added at the end stating that the movie was purely a tale of fiction. However the movie was delayed by a week by which time the grey market was flooded with pirated copies of the movie.

The screening of the film Da Vinci Code has been banned in Punjab, Goa, Nagaland, Meghalaya , Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh. Later, the Andhra Pradesh High Court quashed the State Government's order banning the screening of the film in the state. The Indian censor board however had cleared the movie for release on Friday, 2 June. The Supreme Court of India also rejected petitions calling for a ban on the film, saying the plot which suggested Jesus was married was fictional and not offensive.

The court case brought against Dan Brown by Richard Leigh and Michael Baigent, the authors of the non-fiction book Holy Blood, Holy Grail, has added to the film's publicity.

A cross-promotion also appeared on The Amazing Race 9, where one team earned a trip to the movie's premiere in Hollywood, California. The prize was awarded to the first team to arrive at the Pit Stop bearing two parchments and demonstrating that, when combined, they revealed a picture of Leonardo Da Vinci's Vitruvian Man and a coded message; the first team to arrive at the Pit Stop did show the message and were awarded the prize.

To limit exposure in the age of blogs and constant leaks, both Sony and Imagine Entertainment, decided to forgo test screenings, a form of market research usually considered critical to fine-tuning a picture. According to the studio representative, the strategy is to preserve a climate of mystery and excitement around the movie, despite the fact that anyone who is interested probably already knows the plot through having already read the book. Even theater owners saw the 2 1/2 hour film only 5 days before the film festival, which by exhibition standards is as last minute as it gets.

As part of the lead up to the movie, various encrypted clues are being placed in movie trailers and interviews. In mid-April, two such clues appeared in the Da Vinci Code interviews on Entertainment Tonight and The Insider, as highlighted letters in the names of interviewees.

In February, Sony, in cooperation with Grace Hill Media, launched The Da Vinci Dialogue (aka The Da Vinci Challenge), a fairly comprehensive web site which is intended to defuse Christian opposition to the movie. The site mixes some mild criticisms with movie promotional material.

Several of the changes made in the film, notably those of Langdon's views on the subject, appear to be intended to counterpoint or soften some of the viewpoints expressed in the novel.

There have been protesters at several movie theaters across the United States on opening weekend protesting the themes of the film, citing it as blasphemy and claiming that it shames both the Catholic Church, and Jesus Christ himself. More than 200 protesters also turned out in Athens, Greece to protest the film's release shortly before opening day. In Manila the movie was banned from all theaters and the set by the local MTRCB as an R18 movie for the Philippines. In Pittsburgh, protesters also showed up at a special screening of the film the day before its widespread release. Protests also occurred at the filming sites, but only a monk and a nun stood in a quiet protest at the Cannes premiere. In Chennai, India, the film was banned for a two month period to appease local Christian and Muslim groups.

The Da Vinci Code received generally poor reviews from critics. The film received a 25% rating on the site Rotten Tomatoes, an especially low score for a heavily promoted blockbuster film. The critics' consensus as gathered by Rotten Tomatoes is: "What makes Dan Brown's novel a best seller is evidently not present in this dull and bloated movie adaptation of The Da Vinci Code." The film was poorly received at the Cannes Film Festival, where it debuted.

Director Ron Howard noted that the overwhelmingly negative reviews were "frustrating" to him.

Although many critics gave mostly negative reviews of the film, critics of both sides acknowledged and praised the strong performances of Ian McKellen as well as Paul Bettany.

The film went on to receive a Razzie Nomination for Worst Director (Ron Howard). On the "Worst Movies of 2006" episode of the television show Ebert & Roeper (January 13, 2007), guest critic Michael Phillips (sitting in for the recovering Roger Ebert) listed the film at #2.

A spoof of the movie, The Norman Rockwell Code, was released the same day as the movie itself.

Despite the protests and good pre-release reviews, the film still opened with an estimated $79 million in box office sales on its opening day, averaging $7764 per screen. During its opening weekend, moviegoers spent an estimated $77 million in America, and $224 million worldwide, according to Sony Pictures. The Da Vinci Code is the best domestic opening for both Tom Hanks and Ron Howard.

It also enjoyed the 3rd biggest opening weekend for the year to date (after Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest and X-Men: The Last Stand, and the second biggest worldwide opening weekend ever, just behind 2005's Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith.) This has led some critics, particularly in the UK, to moot the idea of the 'critic-proof film'.

On ComingSoon.Net, a story dated April 12, 2007 stated that The Hollywood Reporter announced that screenwriter Akiva Goldsman was commissioned to adapt Angels & Demons (a Dan Brown novel published before The Da Vinci Code), into a film script. Ron Howard is directing the movie, with Tom Hanks reprising his role as Robert Langdon.

All DVD sets include an introduction from director Ron Howard, ten featurettes, and other bonus features.

In Australia, New Zealand, Spain and Latin America (DVD region code 4), the two disc set also included an extended edition of the film, including over twenty-five minutes of extra footage, bringing the running time to almost three hours.

In Hong Kong and Korea (Region 3), the extended cut was also released on DVD in a two-disc set. Two gift sets were also released, with working cryptex replica, replica journal, and more. The French and Spanish Region 2 disc also received a special gift set.

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The Da Vinci Code in the Philippines

The Philippine Alliance Against Pornography (PAAP) appealed to Philippine President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to stop the showing of The Da Vinci Code in the Philippines. They branded the film as "the most pornographic and blasphemous film in history" and also requested the help of Pope Benedict XVI, the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) and other religious groups to stop the showing of the film. In addition, they compared Dan Brown to Adolf Hitler.

However, Cecille Guidote Alvarez, Philippine Presidential Adviser on Culture and the Arts, said Malacañang will not interfere in controversy about the film and leaves the decision to the Movie and Television Classification Board's (MTRCB) rating. Eventually, MTRCB decided to give The Da Vinci Code an R-18 rating (restricted to those under 18 years of age) despite PAAP's opposition for showing it.

Jaro Archbishop Angel Lagdameo, president of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP), expressed through a pastoral letter that even though The Da Vinci Code is a work of fiction, it "shapes the imagination, stirs emotions and forms mental associations" and added that "Brown has created the impression that his fiction is historical fact." Before the pastoral letter was written, Lipa City Archbishop Ramon Arguelles, CBCP senior member, wrote Consoliza Laguardia, chairperson of the Movie and Television Classification Board (MTRCB), and requested her to prohibit the film's showing in the Philippines, where the majority are Christians, because of its "sacrilegious" and "blasphemous" nature.

Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales, archbishop of Manila, said that the film is a "vicious attack on the divinity of Jesus Christ". He also added that "not since the time of the Presbyter Arius was there an attack on the divinity of Jesus Christ, which was as vicious and as momentarily profitable as this venture of Dan Brown and Sony Film Productions." Although, the CBCP and Cardinal Rosales didn't categorically demand for a ban of the film, they have issued guidelines for Filipino Catholics on watching the film.

The Moro Islamic Liberation Front Deputy Chairman Khaled Musa appealed to the MTRCB to ban the film, arguing that the film is blasphemous not only to Catholics but also to Muslims because Jesus Christ is considered one of the Prophets of Islam. Musa recalled Jyllands-Posten Muhammad cartoons controversy with regards to this film and further explained that freedom of expression should not "invade" freedom of religion.

The City Councilors of Manila passed a resolution to ban the film, labeling it as "offensive and contrary to established religious beliefs which cannot take precedence over the right of the persons involved in the film to freedom of expression." The Councilors who concur to the resolution cited the Revised Penal Code of the Philippines stating that showing a film which offends a religion is a crime, while Councilors who opposed to the resolution stated that the film is only fiction and for entertainment. Those cinema owners who will not heed to the ban has to face a one-year jail term and a Php 5,000 fine and those persons who will be caught selling pirated DVD or VCD copies of the film could be fined Php 3,000 and jailed for up to six months. It was not banned in any of the other cities in Metro Manila, making the film easily accessible to citizens living in Manila.

The SM Supermalls, the largest chain of shopping malls in the Philippines, prohibited the showing of The Da Vinci Code in all of their movie theaters throughout the country. This decision is in line with their policy for not showing films that were rated by MTRCB as R-18.

Although, The Da Vinci Code was banned in Manila and SM Malls, it was still shown in other cinemas all over the Philippines.

Despite The Da Vinci Code's R-18 rating by the MTRCB, Filipino Congressman Bienvenido Abante Jr. rallied to abolish the MTRCB for allowing the film to be shown. Abante, who is also the president of the Metropolitan Baptist Church of the Philippines and called the film as demonic and diabolical, filed House Bill 3269 that seek to abolish the television and film board.

In Cebu City, city moralist Rene Josef Bullecer said that the law that created the MTRCB does not allow the showing of the movie.

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Time Machine: Beyond The Da Vinci Code

Beyond The Da Vinci Code is a controversial, primetime, national double-Emmy Award-nominated The History Channel special TV program, which challenges Dan Brown’s best-selling historical novel, The Da Vinci Code. The program was produced by Tom Quinn of Weller/Grossman Productions in Los Angeles, directed by Will Ehbrecht and premiered in HD format in January 2005.

Timed to coincide with the publication of Dan Brown’s sequel, The Solomon Key, Beyond The Da Vinci Code takes home viewers on a modern search for answers to many ancient questions. Was Mary Magdalene really the wife of Christ, and did she father a child by him who married into a royal French bloodline during the first century A.D.? Have their descendents been protected by the Priory of Sion, a secret society from the Dark Ages? Might there really be evidence in the world of the bloodlines of Christ stretching well into modern society? And, did the Church deliberately mislead its followers for two millennia? Drawing directly from the pages of the best-seller, the Bible, and commentary from esteemed scholars from around the world, BBeyond The Da Vinci Code investigates these questions and more.

Radical, thought provoking, and utterly compelling, this highly original presentation features interviews with key historians and experts from top universities who analyze the controversial alternative history put forth in The Da Vinci Code in an attempt to separate fact from fiction. Also featured is Brown himself, speaking about his work and its extraordinary impact. A must for history buffs, Da Vinci Code aficionados and anyone interested in religion, Beyond The Da Vinci Code is an intriguing addition to any home entertainment library.

Beyond The Da Vinci Code starred Stephen Wozniak as Jesus Christ, Claudia Cox as Mary Magdalene and was narrated by Edward Hermann. The special program included interviews with biblical and historical scholars such as Timothy Freke, Richard Leigh, Dr. Karen Ralls and Dr. Deidre Goode.

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Source : Wikipedia