Bob Hoskins and Ed Asner to Portray John XXIII in TV Films

ROME, OCT. 10, 2001 ( Two television productions are under way on the life of John XXIII.

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British actor Bob Hoskins, 59, will play the “Good Pope” in a TV film directed by Ricky Tognazzi and written by several authors, including Marco Roncalli, one of the Pontiff´s relatives.

Filming will begin in November. The producer is Mediaset, whose principal shareholder is Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi´s family.

The Italian public network RAI, Berlusconi´s immediate competitor, will also produce a TV film on John XXIII. In this film, directed by Dominique Othenin-Girard, the Pope will be played by American actor Ed Asner, 72. Filming will begin by year-end.

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