David Rolfe, director of four films about the Holy Shroud: the first of which began as a religious neutral

“The story between me and the shroud is a love story”: this is how the new movie begins who is he? [¿Quién puede ser Él?]by English director and producer David Rolfewhich opens in London this Easter.

Rolf, 70, with more than a hundred films and TV shows produced between 1972 and today, in his latest work, recounts the mystery of the Holy Shroud and traces the history of It has a special relationship with the shroud of Christ And this lasts – also from the point of view of cinema – nearly fifty years.

Matthew Penny He spoke to him on the phone in his cutting room in Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire, for the Italian’s monthly apology. El Timoni.

– How was your interest in the shroud?

– It was 1976 and I had just graduated from the London Film School. I was looking for an idea to make a documentary. I had put an ad in a London newspaper and had received various proposals, but none of them seemed very interesting to me. Among the items I received was an envelope sent by a certain person Ian WilsonWhich I didn’t know then. He was a historian who wrote about the possible origin of the Shroud of Christ and in that circumstance he had placed it The image of the shroud is in denial.

David Rolfe: “I started the documentary as a religious neutral and ended it as a Christian.”

Unlike the color photo, the black and white photo clearly captured the body of a man and I, as a photographic expert, could not understand How could this image exist on a canvas that was centuries old. And since mystery is always the basis of a good movie, I was convinced I had found the story I was looking for. He was making an investigative documentary on the origin of the image printed on the shroud despite the fact that at the time it was I don’t know convinced He even decided not to baptize his daughter.

-It was hard?

-Implementation of silent witness [El testigo silencioso] In 1978 it was only possible thanks to the father Pietro Rinaldi, to which I dedicated my last film. Rinaldi Salesian living in the United States was considered one of the greatest experts in the shroud, an exceptional priest, loved and respected by his entire community in Port Chester, upstate New York.

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“Introduce me to something Harry John Which gave me the equivalent of a million dollars in today’s dollars to make the movie. I couldn’t believe it, Looks like someone was helping me Specifically for this job. I was worried that Father Rinaldi would be disappointed if the documentary proved the shroud’s falsehood.

– Instead, what did you discover?

– The scientific evidence we collected in the documentary proved that the shroud can go on effectively, Palestine in the time of Christ And that the picture showed the body of a tormented man like Jesus, As described in the Gospels. Moreover, all the experts agreed on the fact of that It wasn’t a picture And it cannot be the work of a forger.

“In the documentary I even interviewed two U.S. Military Air Force doctors who discovered that the image contained encrypted information that, once decoded, revealed features The human face in three dimensions. In addition, the two experts proposed a fascinating theory: they argued that a intense energy emission Radiation emanating from the object itself in a millisecond would burn the canvas, giving rise to the image. The documentary ended with the viewer asking: “Could this happen at the same time that Christians celebrate the Resurrection?”

How was the film received?

– He was an incredible success, he had ticket records and in ten days I was able to sell it all over the world. it’s more, silent witness It won the British Academy Award for Best Documentary, It Changed My Career, and not only that: Thanks to this movie and the meeting with a believing man like Father Rinaldi, I decided to get confirmation and my daughter’s baptism on the same day. let’s say I started the documentary as a religious neutral and ended it as a Christian.

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-what happened after that?

-distance silent witness Thanks to the proceeds from the film, Father Rinaldi created STURP PROJECT (The Shroud of Turin Research Project), which continues to this day. It is the most reliable study of the shroud to date. For several days, a group of American and European scientists obtained permission to conduct various experiments on fabric. In 1981, their results confirmed what they had previously confirmed in the documentary, and concluded by saying:How or what produced the image of the shroud remains a mystery“.

-What did you do then?

– In 1984 she was commissioned to make a documentary series entitled Jesus, the guide [Jesús, las pruebas]. The series gave space to some radical theological positions that held that everything we know about Jesus should be revised because it was not historically correct. I’m the one after that They started going to mass regularlyI lived those discoveries as a shockI felt cheated and my faith wavered for a while, though She bears the call of the severe shroud man.

Spanish clip from the official video of the Shroud for the 2010 exhibition.

“The series caused a wave of anger and contempt across Christian parishes in the United Kingdom, accused of undermining faith and tradition, moreover, Some of my decisions as a director are taken with a certain lightness, such as the scene in which the statue of Christ was blown up, only served to stir controversy. I think this product came to affect the mass audience, it contributed to a noticeable drop that I feel guilty about.

– In 1988 the shroud was examined again with the announcement of the carbon-14 test under the supervision of the British Museum. How did you react to the news?

I immediately went to the BBC to suggest another documentary. I was impressed by the fact that the experiments would be done blind and that strict verification protocols would be followed. The idea I suggested to the BBC was that the film itself would announce the rule of thumb to the world. You have already agreed with Luigi Gunillathe scientific advisor in Turin about the shroud, but the idea unfortunately faltered when It was obvious that these protocols would not be respected.

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“When the results were announced the following year dating the Shroud to sometime between 1260 and 1390 AD, I felt a lot of bitterness. In my new documentary, which comes out this Easter, I delve into all of this in a detailed way and talk about how these came to be. Results Absolutely unreliable.

Is that why you decided to make another movie in 2008?

-yes. With Rip Turin: Physical Evidence [La Síndone de Turín: las pruebas materiales]I wanted to restore academic respect to the Shroud. This time I had the privilege Recording live shroud in high resolution, has not been done before. It was an incredible emotion! As your eye adapts to the light, it begins to absorb the incredible amount of information on the plate.

“Although it is two thousand years old, that painting still retains the brilliance that gives you the impression that it was made yesterday. This time the documentary focused on the wonderful work of John Jacksonof Colorado Springs, one of the greatest shroud scholars.

What do you expect with a movie premiere? who is he?

Screening of the documentary for the first time Holy Thursday And it will be possible to see it in flow on gate who is he? [¿Quién puede ser Él?] I hope this time it will also attract the attention of a big distributor. And that the public realizes that in the shroud we are facing what the scholars call “Singularity”, i.e. an inexplicable event.

In fact, the film ends with a challenge: If the British Museum is able to reproduce a replica, I will reward them with the production. Million dollars. Because if the shroud is a miracle, then everything else makes sense. Jesus is truly the Son of God who rose for us.

Translated by expensive talk.

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