PHOTOS: Life is Beautiful actor Roberto Benigni meets the pope

 

Pope Francis meeting with Roberto Benigni, Dec. 7, 2022. / Vatican Media. See CNA article for full slideshow.

Rome Newsroom, Dec 7, 2022 / 08:17 am (CNA).

Pope Francis enthusiastically greeted Italian actor and comedian Roberto Benigni at the Vatican on Wednesday morning.

Benigni, best known for his Oscar-winning film “Life is Beautiful”, met privately with the pope to tell him about his latest project, a new show about St. Francis of Assisi.

Pope Francis meeting with Roberto Benigni, Dec. 7, 2022. Vatican Media
Pope Francis meeting with Roberto Benigni, Dec. 7, 2022. Vatican Media

The comic, who recited a line from Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy from memory on the Oscars stage in 1999, now serves as the host of the Italian program based on St. Francis’ poem The Canticle of the Sun.

The show, “Francesco Il Cantico,” is currently streaming on Paramount Plus in Italy. Benigni also gave the pope a copy of the program on DVD, according to Reuters.

Pope Francis meeting with Roberto Benigni, Dec. 7, 2022. Vatican Media
Pope Francis meeting with Roberto Benigni, Dec. 7, 2022. Vatican Media

Greeting the pope with a hug, Benigni joked that the pontiff was “emanating light.”

Pope Francis told him not to exaggerate, to which the actor replied: “I have to exaggerate, I’m happy to be here.”


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