In 2006, acclaimed director Ron Howard adapted the first of Dan Brown’s three Robert Langdon novels for the big screen – “The Da Vinci Code”. Actor Tom Hanks took on the role of the Harvard professor whose expertise in the fictional field of symbology took him across the world to solve historical mysteries and put him on the radar of religious secret societies of the whole world. Hanks reprized his role as Langdon in 2009 for “Angels & Demons” and again in 2016 for “Inferno”.
Ian McKellen only appeared in the first film as Langdon’s friend Sir Leigh Teabing, a historian and expert on the lore surrounding the Holy Grail. After Langdon becomes involved in the Louvre murder investigation, he and police cryptologist Sophie Neveu (Andrea Tautou) quickly find themselves in conflict with the Priory of Sion and Opus Dei, two obscure orders of the Catholic Church. . The reason? As Teabing explains, the Holy Grail has historically been described as a chalice from which the historic Jesus Christ drank; in “The Da Vinci Code”, the Grail is actually a vessel – a womb, to be precise – that contains the sacred lineage of Jesus. They postulate that Mary Magdalene was not a prostitute, as written in the accepted gospels, but the wife of Jesus and the carrier of his children. Teabing is also revealed to be the grandmaster of the film’s global conspiracy, an attempt to bring down the Catholic Church.
The film received its fair share of controversy, especially from the real-world Catholic Church, a controversy that McKellen was aware of. “People who go to see movies, their minds are not as sharp as those who read a book. Does the Vatican think so? So they have to be protected from what they see? I don’t approve of censorship. “, did he declare IGN. “They should just accept that this is a fictional thriller, but Dan Brown could claim more.”