A New Head Honcho in the the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Office for Film and Broadcasting

Mark Shea reports on the appointment of a new head guy in the Catholic office of film.

Former PBS Executive Named to Head Catholic Film Office

(RNS) Harry Forbes has been named the new director of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Office for Film and Broadcasting, the conference has announced.

Forbes is a New York drama critic and former PBS press relations executive. He has written for Back Stage, The Manhattan Spirit and Time Out New York. In addition to his 20 years with PBS, he has held positions at CBS and NBC in New York.

“Harry Forbes brings an extensive background in TV, dramatic arts and management to this vital position at the USCCB,” said Monsignor Francis Maniscalco, director of the U.S. Bishops’ communications department.

The Office for Film and Broadcasting reviews mainstream movies for “moral content as well as technical and artistic considerations” and then assigns a “moral classification” to each.

Maniscalco said Forbes has an “excellent background” to help the office achieve its goals.

“The office directly assists America’s 65 million Catholics with its reviews and ratings of films by bringing the Church’s moral perspective to bear in this arena,” Maniscalco said.

Forbes will succeed Gerri Pare, who chose to retire early after being with the office for 14 years.

. . . . . . . . . . . .

Yadda yadda blah blah

Then a friend in the media (no, not Rod, you don’t know him) sez: “As it happens, I know someone who applied for this position. All he presented was a deep portfolio of several hundred finely crafted film reviews, great enthusiasm for the potential of movies to move hearts and minds, and firm fidelity to the Catholic Church. Who’d the job go to? A guy with spotless New York Liberal Establishment credentials.

This may not tell me everything about the USCCB’s office of film and broadcasting, but it sure says all *I* need to know.”

So it goes…

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About Jeffrey Overstreet

Jeffrey Overstreet has two passions: writing fiction, and celebrating art — music, cinema, photography, literature — through writing and teaching. He is the author of a “memoir of dangerous moviegoing” — Through a Screen Darkly. And his four-novel fantasy series, The Auralia Thread, which begins with Auralia's Colors, was published by Random House. He speaks at universities and conferences around the world about understanding art through eyes of faith. He is earning his MFA in Creative Writing at Seattle Pacific University, where he has worked for 11 years as an editor, writer, and communications project manager. His work has been recognized in The New Yorker, TIME, The Seattle Times, IMAGE, Ravi Zacharias International — and Christianity Today, where he served as a film journalist for more than a decade. He recently began a weekly column called "Listening Closer" for Christ and Pop Culture.