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Well-Known Actors and Directors Who Are Believers?


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Stephen Colbert

Probably -- according to his Wikipedia entry, he teaches Sunday School.

It seems pretty certain, according to this blog commentary, which quotes from a 2004 interview in which he discusses the relationship between his faith and his comedy.

In a 2005 interview, asked "How do you square your Catholicism with comedy?" Colbert said

I love my Church, and I'm a Catholic who was raised by intellectuals, who were very devout. I was raised to believe that you could question the Church and still be a Catholic. What is worthy of satire is the misuse of religion for destructive or political gains. That's totally different from the Word, the blood, the body and the Christ. His kingdom is not of this earth.

Did anyone else catch the Colbert Report this week when all this came up? (This is purely from memory, but here goes.) His guest was a professor who wrote a book about Lucifer and tried to argue that God made a mistake in the garden of Eden, God actually created hell, etc. . Colbert, in all apparent sincerity, tells him that we choose to sin, which separates us from God's love, and "that's what Hell is. Separation from God's love. God doesn't send you to hell. You send yourself to hell by sinning.". The guest looks flustered and says "Obviously you paid attention in Sunday School." to which Colbert replies "I teach Sunday School m----- f---er!".

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Did anyone else catch the Colbert Report this week when all this came up? (This is purely from memory, but here goes.) His guest was a professor who wrote a book about Lucifer and tried to argue that God made a mistake in the garden of Eden, God actually created hell, etc. . Colbert, in all apparent sincerity, tells him that we choose to sin, which separates us from God's love, and "that's what Hell is. Separation from God's love. God doesn't send you to hell. You send yourself to hell by sinning.". The guest looks flustered and says "Obviously you paid attention in Sunday School." to which Colbert replies "I teach Sunday School m----- f---er!".

You can watch the clip here.

"I feel a nostalgia for an age yet to come..."
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Did anyone else catch the Colbert Report this week when all this came up? (This is purely from memory, but here goes.) His guest was a professor who wrote a book about Lucifer and tried to argue that God made a mistake in the garden of Eden, God actually created hell, etc. . Colbert, in all apparent sincerity, tells him that we choose to sin, which separates us from God's love, and "that's what Hell is. Separation from God's love. God doesn't send you to hell. You send yourself to hell by sinning.". The guest looks flustered and says "Obviously you paid attention in Sunday School." to which Colbert replies "I teach Sunday School m----- f---er!".

You can watch the clip here.

Cool. Thanks for the link.

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I dunno, am I the only person who's bothered by the fact that Colbert's Sunday School students will probably see this? (Or does he teach, like, "adult Sunday School" or something?)

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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I dunno, am I the only person who's bothered by the fact that Colbert's Sunday School students will probably see this? (Or does he teach, like, "adult Sunday School" or something?)

Because of the curse word?

That's just how eye roll.

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Yup.

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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That part kinda bothers me too -- it's one of those things where I laughed hard at the time, and then, once I had time to reflect, realized that the particular phrase he uses is . . . a little unfortunate. I think he got carried away.

That's just how eye roll.

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In the past, on an interview with Conan O'Brien, he's said that he teaches a Sunday School class for six-year-olds. And Colbert says things on television on a regular basis that would make most parents of Sunday-school six-year-olds raise their eyebrows.

Edited by Overstreet

P.S.  I COULD BE WRONG.

 

Takin' 'er easy for all you sinners at lookingcloser.org. Also abiding at Facebook and Twitter.

 

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But then I doubt that many six year olds what his show.

Well, not on their own initiative . . . but as a family activity some (unfortunately?) may.

That's just how eye roll.

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Overstreet wrote:

: In the past, on an interview with Conan O'Brien, he's said that he teaches a Sunday School class for six-year-olds. And Colbert says things on television on a regular basis that would make most parents of Sunday-school six-year-olds raise their eyebrows.

Well, fine and dandy. I've used words publicly that would raise the eyebrows of some of my readers, too. But there's something about LINKING the 12-letter word for incest with one's status as a Sunday School teacher that, I dunno, just rubs me the wrong way. As one who once taught a class of 3rd-graders, my first reaction was to imagine the reception I might get if I walked back into that class next Sunday; it would not surprise me if kids that age had Google'd me ages ago and therefore knew what I did for a living, and it would not surprise me if they had seen that video clip on the internet. Maybe I'm wrong, and 3rd-graders aren't that savvy; and maybe the 1st-graders that Colbert teaches are even LESS savvy; but it's still not a risk I'd be wanting to take.

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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  • 3 months later...

There's an interview up on beliefnet with Denzel Washington, in which he talks about The Great Debaters and how he perceives his acting work as a calling. A snippet:

Why was it so important to put spirituality in it?

Because spirituality is important in every aspect of my life. I mean, that's why I'm here. That's what I've been blessed to do.

When I was about 20 years old, when I first started acting, I was sitting in my mother's beauty shop. And a woman just kept looking at me. I was looking in the mirror, and I saw her across the room. And she said, "Someone give me a piece of paper." And she wrote down a prophecy. She said that I would speak to millions of people, and I would travel the world and preach to millions of people. And I didn't know what she was talking about. But this was March 27th, 1975, 32 years ago now, almost 33 years ago.

So my work has been my ministry. In fact, I asked my pastor, years ago, "Do you think I should become a minister or a preacher? And he says, "Well, that's what you're doing already." And he felt, as I feel, that that's what she was talking about back then.

I've always understood why I've been blessed to be put in this situation. And I'm more than happy to take advantage of it and to preach, if you will, about what God has done in my life.

In case you were wondering, my name is spelled "Denes House," but it's pronounced "Throatwobbler Mangrove."
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  • 1 month later...

Thanks to Gina and The Point, here's Stephen Beard on Charlton Heston (RIP), Denzel Washington, and Russell Crowe.

Beard references the Washington interviews mentioned in previous posts in this thread. The Crowe info is news to me, though!

There is this difference between the growth of some human beings and that of others: in the one case it is a continuous dying, in the other a continuous resurrection. (George MacDonald, The Princess and Curdie)

Isn't narrative structure enough of an ideology for art? (Greg Wright)

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BethR wrote:

: The Crowe info is news to me, though!

Yeah, I blogged that back in November, and one thing I and a few others have been keen to know is which communion or denomination Crowe was thinking of getting baptized into.

Curiously, the news broke only one week after I had blogged this OTHER thing, a promotional video for Seventh-Day Adventist seminaries that Crowe had starred in back in the early '90s:

I acted in a few things like this myself, back in the day, so it's kind of funny to think that someone else who did went on to win an Oscar -- though not for videos like these! :)

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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Is Paul Thomas Anderson spritual? I know most (basically all) of his films have spritual/biblical metaphors and meanings, and his next film looks like no exception. Has he spoken about any of this?

Unclear. He had a MySpace page that listed him as Catholic, and he has said that the Catholic cop Jim Kurring (played by John C. Reilly) in Magnolia was a representation of everything he would like to be as a person. IIRC, he's also referred to filmmaking as a form of confession. People of course have used There Will Be Blood as evidence that PT doesn't believe in God, but I'd say that's a fundamental misunderstanding of the film.

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People of course have used There Will Be Blood as evidence that PT doesn't believe in God, but I'd say that's a fundamental misunderstanding of the film.

I have mixed feelings about that film but never thought it was evidence of that. I often find depictions of woefully fallen men to be God-affirming, because such a condition supports and affirms much of what Scripture teaches.

"What matters are movies, not awards; experiences, not celebrations; the subjective power of individual critical points of view, not the declamatory compromises of consensus." - Richard Brody, "Godard's Surprise Win Is a Victory for Independent Cinema," The New Yorker

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  • 1 month later...

Do we want to add Joe Eszterhas -- writer of Flashdance, Basic Instinct and Showgirls, among others -- to the mix?

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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  • 1 month later...

Link to the thread dedicated to Joe Eszterhas.

- - -

Lilly follows her moral compass

Before agreeing to a small cameo in Kathryn Bigelow's gut-wrenching film The Hurt Locker, Canadian actress Evangeline Lilly picked up the phone and dialled the director's Los Angeles home. The two women talked for hours

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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Just caught the Crowe video for the first time - brilliant. That final moment with the cheesy frozen smiles and the soundtrack - awesome.

Seriously though, I was surprised by the list of skills that the guy listed off at the start - if they really give you a good grounding in councselling, people management, communications and publica relations and building and architecture, then they're way ahead of most such institutions.

Did you really have to say "yes" rather than "yeah" though?

Matt

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  • 1 month later...
Jada Pinkett Smith, wife of Will Smith, on parenting:

The actress also urges other parents to teach their children about all religions: "We go to church as a family on Sunday, but we study world religion during the week as well. We read excerpts from the Bible, from Hindu texts, Kabbalah, Judaism."

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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  • 1 month later...

Will Smith denies Scientology rumours again:

When asked to clarify if he is a Scientologist, Smith tells Newsweek magazine, "No, but when people are afraid of religion they have to go back and get in touch with the Good Book. Fear of other religions means you're questioning your own understanding, and that's just not where I am."

He explains, "I love the nature of humanity's search for meaning. For me I'm certain about my relationship with the model of perfection of human life that's laid out with the life of Jesus Christ. I'm certain of that.

"I'm at home and not fearful when I sit in a mosque or a synagogue or a Buddhist temple, the same way that I'm home in the Church of Scientology. I like anywhere people are searching for the truth, and I respect their path and I'm intrigued by their path.

"I think when you are certain in and of what you believe in, you can open your mind to seeing the ways of others."

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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