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Rome Reports

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Cardinal Dziwisz Docu-Drama to Premier at Vatican

Called Testimony, the film tells the true story of Cardinal Dziwisz’s many years as Pope John Paul II’s personal secretary and closest friend.

The film is a documentary on the Pope’s life with re-enactments of the most important events of John Paul II’s pontificate.

Narrated by actor Michael York and with music by the renowned composer Vangelis, the movie includes an in-depth interview with Cardinal Dziwisz, who’s now the Archbishop of Krakow.

The film is based on the cardinal’s bestselling book, “A Life With Karol” – a memoir he co-wrote in 2007 with retired Vatican journalist Gian Franco Svidercoschi.

Gian Franco SvidercoschiCo-author, ‘A Life with Karol’It was an incredible job, accomplished through many telephone calls and trips to Krakow, Warsaw, and Rome., and written in just three months…it was a miracle that this book was written.

The movie reveals details not told in the original memoir, including memories of Karol Wojtyła?s childhood and youth.

It also depicts previously unknown and poignant moments from the Pope?s private life, and the infamous assassination attempt on his life in 1981.

Gian Franco SvidercoschiCo-author, ‘A Life with Karol’The film portrayed the attack in a very symbolic and very nice way, one which you don’t expect…for example, you see the reaction – and this is very nice – the reaction of the statues of the saints above the basilica when he is attacked and their horror at what had happened.

Svidercoschi welcomes the film because he fears that much of Karol Wojtyla’s life is already being forgotten.

He says preserving the memory of John Paul II was a primary motivation behind writing the book.

Gian Franco SvidercoschiCo-author, ‘A Life with Karol’We tried to systemize some fundamental points of his pontificate – we chose four or five fundamental subjects, which weren’t put in any chronological order.

Testimony begins showing in Polish theatres on October 17th, one day after the 30th Anniversary of the election of John Paul the II as Pope.

Another opportunity to learn about the fascinating story of a Pope who changed the world.