Gómez-Sancha, who is a member of Opus Dei, described how Joffé came to the project. The London-born director became fascinated with the Spanish saint in the wake of the bestselling book, “The Da Vinci Code,” which was later made into a movie.
“The Da Vinci Code” presents a lurid vision of Opus Dei as a militant secret society in the Church.
Controversy over the book and movie led Joffé to read the writings of St. Josemaría Escrivá. And though an agnostic, Joffé was captivated by the saint’s vision of heroic Christian faith and holiness.
After seeing the screenplay Joffé wrote, Gómez-Sancha decided to give the director a chance. He gathered together investors to create a film fund and raised money for the project.
He calls his efforts an expression of his faith. “It is very important to do movies in a profitable way with a good message,” he said.
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The story told in “There Be Dragons” is set during the Spanish Civil War of the 1930s. However, Gómez-Sancha said that “the dramatic center of the movie is not actually the war, but what (are) called the 'dragons'.”
“The dragons,” he explained, “are anything that makes you suffer, the situations that life puts you in,” such as guilt, hatred, jealousy and betrayal.
Gómez-Sancha stressed the importance of having “an agnostic like Roland” telling a story with “a message that is absolutely universal.”