Hollywood Planning Film about Pontius Pilate

A trend in biblical epics continues:

Deadline reports that Warner Brothers has purchased a script called Pontias Pilate  from Woman on Top writer Vera Blasi, a new take on the crucifixion of Jesus Christ as told through the eyes of the man who ordered it to happen. The film will follow Pilate’s journey as a soldier who gains power under the Roman Emperor Tiberius, but screws up along the way and finds himself desperate for public approval when the time comes to make the choice as to the fate of Jesus of Nazareth…

…No director is attached to Pontius Pilate yet, but Darren Aronofsky, Ridley Scott,Steven Spielberg, Paul Verhoeven, and even Woman in Black helmer James Watkins all have Bible-based films in various stages of development, and this one could drum up enough publicity from religious groups to cause a bit of controversy and attract more attention to it, which of course would please the studio.

It remains to be seen whether or not the films in this trend will actually continue all the way to the big screen or remain languishing in development hell, but we know for sure that we’ll at least be getting Darren Aronofsky’s take on Noah coming to theaters in 2014.

Read the rest.



Bible Archaeology

The iPad in Archaeology

From the University of Liverpool:

Peta Bulmer, a Ph.D student from the Department of Archaeology, Classics and Egyptology is carrying out a study on the use of iPads for fieldwork.

In a joint project between the Department of Archaeology, Classics and Egyptology and the Computing Services Department, Peta will explore the use of mobile devices, whilst working ‘in the field’ on a number of sites across Europe, over the summer.

The iPad will be used to take photographs, make notes and sketches, and record data from digs, rather than collate them post trip, as is the norm. It is hoped that the flexible and portable nature of the device will enable speedier, more efficient and accurate recording and analysis of the data gathered onsite.

Peta selected a 64GB iPad 2, one of the most popular tablets in the marketplace, as her chosen mobile device. An additional stylus has been provided to enable sketch work.

Jake Gannon, Head of Systems and Applications, in Computing Services Department, said: “We were delighted when Peta approached us to see how we could support her academic endeavours in the field. We are very excited at the prospect of using Peta’s experiences to help us shape our existing services as well as develop new services and guidance for our student and research community.”

As part of the study, Peta will use the iPad whilst digging at the ancient Greek site of Pistiros in Bulgaria, the medieval site of Poulton on the English – Welsh border, Delemere, and the Roman – Viking – medieval site at Hungate, near York. She will also be exploring the archaeology of ancient Kos.

Peta, said: “So far, the iPad has proved quite useful. It’s small and lightweight so easier to travel with than a laptop, and especially helpful when negotiating more physically challenging sites. It’s also handy to have readily available access to guidance documents such as recording conventions, and makes recording dig findings and data much less time consuming. Although I don’t have them at the moment, I can see the benefits of additional drawing and data packages.”

On her return to the University, Peta will produce a report highlighting the benefits and drawbacks of using technology in the field. Once complete, a case study and guidelines will be made available on the CSD website.

CSD will make a series of recommendations based on the findings of the study, and will investigate how it can tailor its services to complement mobile devices such as an iPad. The development of a University of Liverpool fieldwork app is already being considered.




Canadian ‘Punching’ Preacher Banned from UK


A Canadian preacher, who claims to cure sick people by hitting them, has been refused entry into the UK for a controversial tour.

Todd Bentley, who is based in the US and founded the revivalist organisation Fresh Fire USA, had planned to hold a string of meetings in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

He is currently in Norway for an event called Miracles, Signs and Wonders.

However, Mr Bentley has been told he was “not conducive to the public good” and was not allowed to enter the country.

The former drug addict, who describes receiving “prophetic and miracle-healing anointing” from God, has previously used his shows to “cure” cancer by kicking his followers in the face or stomach.

In clips, he is heard telling an audience: “And the Holy Spirit spoke to me, the gift of faith came on me. He said, ‘kick her in the face with your biker boot’. I inched closer and I went like this – bam! And just as my boot made contact with her nose, she fell under the power of God.”

Writing on his website, Mr Bentley, 36, said: “The passion of Todd’s life and ministry to the nations is souls and to see others experience the transferable, tangible anointing of the Holy Spirit.”

But according to the Guardian, the Home Office did not see fit to allow him to visit the UK.

“We can confirm that Mr Bentley has been excluded from the UK,” a spokesman told the newspaper.

“The government makes no apologies for refusing people access to the UK if we believe they are not conducive to the public good.

“Coming here is a privilege that we refuse to extend to those who might seek to undermine our society.”

Mr Bentley criticised the decision online, calling on his followers to pray.