Vatican City, Oct 22, 2020 / 10:22 am
The director of a new documentary about Pope Francis received an Italian film award in a ceremony in the Vatican Gardens on Thursday, amid international controversy over his documentary on the life and ministry of Pope Francis.
Filmmaker Evgeny Afineevsky, the director of “Francesco,” was presented with the Kinéo Movie for Humanity Award Oct. 22.
Now in its 18th year, the award is given to those who promote social, humanitarian, and environmental issues in cinema.
Accepting the award, Afineevsky said “I’m so proud that finally ‘Francesco’ is on its way to the world to change hearts and minds.”
“I’m happy that I can bring the voices of the Rohingya refugees, refugees from Syria, voices of victims of sexual abuse, voices from different points and from different corners of the world. Something that Pope Francis really cares [about] and something that is really deeply in my heart,” he stated.
Afineevsky said that, while the pope cannot bring attention to those issues through papal travel at the moment, due to COVID-19, he was “so proud that today the movie can continue this mission.”
The Vatican press office has not given any public statement on the film, which made international headlines on Wednesday for including a line from Pope Francis in a video interview calling for the passage of civil union laws for same-sex couples.
Francis’ statement seems to depart from the position of the Vatican’s doctrinal office and the pope’s predecessors on the issue.