It’s got a star-studded cast, is opening at
Cannes, and holds a slew of lawsuits under its belt. It seems
like a bit of inadvertent marketing genius on the part of The Da
Vinci Code machine then, to have an enormous poster of the movie (featuring an image of the “Mona
Lisa” and the movie title) warrant stern removal by the Interior Ministry itself in
Rome. The poster appeared on the facade of the church of St. Pantaleo, which is located
in the historic center of Rome. Church spokesman Marco Fibbi said (I imagine in the driest of tones): “This
movie is not reputed to be particularly appreciated by ecclesiastic circles.”
I’m one of those people who didn't think much of the book, but I continue to be impressed at the various ways in which this mystery-thriller manages both to offend and gather up massive amounts of publicity.
Now the whole Da Vinci madness is getting a little baroque: according to Reuters, three weeks after the British ruling in the copyright case involving Dan Brown’s book, a lawyer discovered what looks to be a secret code in the judge’s ruling’s text. Some of the letters in the ruling are italicized and spell out “Smith code.” Justice Peter Smith is said by his clerk to be “generally speaking, a humorous type of person.