(Vatican City--Rome) Christmas miracle or an insult to Mel Gibson? First, it was St. George of England, who slew a dragon. Now, will it be St. George of Hollywood to the Catholic Church's rescue? Yes, if Pope Benedict XVI has his way. The Vatican announced today that actor George Clooney will be beatified for "his work in Ocean's 11, Syriana and Darfur." Congratulations and confusion began almost immediately.
From Tom Cruise, through his publicist, Arnold Robinson, "Tom feels that George is a great actor. But a saint? That's a bit Oprah the top. Get it?" Robinson went on to say that "if we're talking miracles, anyone who could go through what Tom has in the last year, well, just bring on the water, and he'll do some walking." Robinson concluded by saying that Cruise would not actually walk on water because it goes against the teachings of the Church of Scientology, of which the actor is a member and "just knowing he can do it is enough."
Professor Lotta Miles, of Harvard Divinity School, was surprised and perplexed by the Vatican move. "You could have knocked me over with a communion host. I thought Pope Benedict would be a conservative. And usually, you have to be dead for at least five years to be considered for sainthood. I haven't gone to the movies that much lately, but I don't think Mr. Clooney is dead. Second, the process of sainthood generally starts with being declared venerable. This Pope is a wild man!"
However, it seems that the Vatican already has foreseen these objections and answered them on their web site. "The Holy Father, being God's publicist on earth and infallible, has decided that the steps of being declared venerable and beatified be rolled into one. And as far as being still alive and having not performed miracles of note, The Holy Father points to the original TV series ER, from whose tomb no star again rose, not even Elliott Gould, and the NBC incarnation of ER, from which the venerably beautified George Clooney rose to become a star."
In a phone interview, Clooney's agent, Johnny Planco, would not discuss his client's reaction to possible sainthood nor answer if the rumors of Clooney licensing out his name for the purposes of holy relics were true. Planco did say that he and the Vatican were in "deep discussion" about a movie called "Saint Hood", in which a "tough as nails thug with a heart of gold doles out Death Wish justice and a side order of brimstone to an Australian director who makes a movie about heathen Indians. Saint Hood then repents, spending the rest of his days as a Christian gangsta rap producer." A production date has of this writing not been announced.