Hollywood Taking on the Church’s Problem With Sexual Abuse

Nikki Finke is reporting that there is a new movie in the works at Dreamworks and Participant on the Boston priest sex abuse thing.

Life rights have been acquired to the Boston Globe’s “Spotlight Team” of reporters and editors, including then-Globe editor Marty Baron, special projects editor Ben Bradlee Jr., Spotlight Team editor Walter “Robby” Robinson and reporters Michael Rezendes, Sacha Pfeiffer, and Matt Carroll. The team spent a year interviewing victims and reviewing thousands of pages of documents and discovered years of cover-up by Catholic Church leadership. Their reporting eventually led to the resignation of Cardinal Bernard Law who had hidden years of serial abuse by other priests and opened the floodgates to other revelations of molestation and cover-upsaround the world which still reverberate today. For their efforts, the Globe team won the Pulitzer Prize for Public Service in 2003.


Well, we certainly have it coming. Again. The evil was so great that it could never be enough to be scourged by it again. It’s not going to be a commercial success. They already know that. I mean, no one is clamoring to see this horrific stuff played out as entertainment. But, it is already the lead contender for many Oscars, the Writers Guild Award, the Golden Globe Award, and the “This is the Most Flippin’ Important Brave and Brilliant Movie In Like Ever” award. It’s ironic that an industry which thrives off of turning beautiful young actors from people into pieces of meat is going to tell us all what is wrong with the Church, but, as I say, we have it coming.

And about that… We have it coming not because we aren’t supposed to have sinners in our house. And terrible sinners. Which tends to be what the secular religion-haters think about this topic. They think that Christians are hypocrites who say they don’t sin. This is, of course, an untruth. The Church is a refuge for sinners. We have it coming because we forgot this fact, believed the secular lie and so, we were scandalized by the revelation that we had the great sinners and we sought to run and hide that. Just so we’re clear.

One strong positive in the project’s favor is that the writer is great. Tom McCarthy wrote the The Station Agent (which I loved), The Visitor (which I really loved) and Up (which the whole cosmos loved). I swear I have given talks wherein I have only used clips from Tom’s movies. He’s very humane. Hopefully, he will bring that humanity to this piece and aim at saying something helpful to us all about how the sex abuse thing happened and why people handled the horror of it the way they did.

See Barb at Via Affirmativa in Colorado Springs in May
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