Tom Riley doesn’t make a very convincing Leonardo Da Vinci, thanks to his thick British accent. Other than that, the new Starz fantasy series “Da Vinci’s Demons” could be fun for most everyone… except the Catholic Church.
Da Vinci has been in the doghouse ever since Dan Brown wrote his 2003 murder mystery “The Da Vinci Code.”
The largely fictional work put the Renaissance master in the middle of a conspiracy by the Catholic church to cover up the fact that Jesus had a wife and produced at least one child, thereby establishing a bloodline and refuting his sanctity as the son of God.
The Vatican denounced the book and the
In real life, Da Vinci was never at odds with the church. He even sent for a priest on his deathbed to confess and receive the Holy Sacrament. Nonetheless, his keen interest in science, math, music, art and engineering made him the symbol of 15th Century secular humanism.
The series, shot on a set in Wales made to look like the Renaissance Italian city of Florence, focuses on the intrigue of the times and Leonardo’s emergence as a genius who faces challenges politically and socially as he develops his world view. It’s unknown whether Da Vinci’s suspected homosexuality will play a role in the production.
The series, a collaborative effort between Starz and BBC Worldwide, will be more “Da Vinci Code” than Da Vinci’s real life. For one, it will include a fictional cult called the “Sons of Mithras,” which is involved in mysticism and political intrigue.
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