Saturday, April 2, 2005

An Obituary for the Pontiff, Compiled Entirely from Trivia Gleaned from the Internet Movie Database’s Biographical Information

Pope vs. Doc OctopusKarol Wojtyla was born May 18, 1920 in Wadowice, Poland. He was 5’ 10” tall (1.78 m). He is sometimes credited as Papez Jan Pavel II, Papiez Jan Pawel II, and Pope John Paul II.

After the death of Pope John Paul I on September 28, 1978, the College of Cardinals met in a secret conclave in the Vatican to elect the 263rd successor to St. Peter as Bishop of Rome. In the eighth round of voting, on October 16, the cardinals chose Karol Wojtyla, who accepted and became the first Pope in 456 years that was not of Italian descent.

In 1982, Marvel Comics graphically adapted his life story in the comic book The Life of Pope John Paul II.

The pope was a fan of the actor Anthony Quinn (Zorba the Greek), and even personally baptized the twin children of the actor’s son, Francesco Quinn (“JAG”).

In addition to his appearance, via archive news footage, in blockbusters like Armageddon and Mel Gibson: God’s Lethal Weapon, Mr. Wojtyla has writing credits on two films adapted from his plays: La Bottega dell’orefice (a.k.a. The Jeweller’s Shop), starring Burt Lancaster, and Brat Naszego Boga (a.k.a. Our God’s Brother).

He was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal on July 27, 2000, by President Clinton, which was topped by George W. Bush in 2004, when he awarded the pontiff America’s highest honor, the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Mr. Wojtyla suffered from Parkinson’s Disease, and was parodied by a look-alike puppet on the French television show Les Guignols de l’info.

Meanwhile, in Vatican City …
Meanwhile, in Vatican City . . .

Thwack! Wham! Ka-Pow! Snikt!
Thwack! Wham! Ka-Pow! Snikt! To the Popemobile!
To the Popemobile!

Pictures courtesy eBay, where the bidding price for a near-mint edition of The Life of Pope John Paul II is $11.05 as of this writing.

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