Last month during the Cannes Film Festival, celebrated filmmaker William Friedkin spoke at a masterclass event, where he shared an amazing story from his seminal horror film The Exorcist, which is still considered by many to be one of the scariest movies of all time. The director revealed that The Vatican actually invited him to shoot video of an actual exorcism. However, The Vatican is denying these claims. Here's what the director had to say at Cannes last month.
"I was invited by the Vatican exorcist to shoot and video an actual exorcism which... few people have ever seen and which nobody has ever photographed. I am not talking about some cult, I am talking about an exorcism by the Catholic Church in Rome. I was pretty astonished by that. I don't think I will ever be the same having seen this astonishing thing."
However, shortly after this comments were made, a representative for The Vatican told the AFP (via Yahoo!), that those claims were incorrect. The unidentified spokesperson did offer an alternate theory about William Friedkin's claims. Here's what the Vatican spokesperson had to say below.
"(The Vatican denies) making any such invitation. The Vatican (itself) does not have an exorcist. People often confuse any Catholic initiative/organisation/person with the Vatican. Perhaps this is the case here."
The movie earned a whopping $193 million during its theatrical run in 1973, which, when adjusting for inflation, would equate to a $885.5 million movie today. The movie has made $441.1 million worldwide, which includes theatrical re-releases in 2000 and 2010. After The Exoricst's theatrical release in 1973, it went on to earn 10 Oscar nominations, making history as the first ever horror movie to be nominated for Best Picture.
As of now, William Friedkin hasn't responded to The Vatican's dismissal of his claims, but we'll be sure to keep you posted. It's also worth noting that The Exorcist is about to be revisited on the small screen, with Fox picking up The Exorcist TV series, which is set to debut this fall. We'll be sure to keep you posted with any updates on The Exorcist on the big screen or the small as soon as more details come in.