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Last Updated: Tuesday, 25 April 2006, 15:38 GMT 16:38 UK
Da Vinci poster taken off church
The Da Vinci Code poster on Rome's church of St Pantaleo
The church is in the historic centre of Rome
A giant poster promoting The Da Vinci Code film is to be removed from a Rome church following complaints.

The Italian authorities are to take down the advert, which was put on scaffolding covering the Church of St Pantaleo while it underwent renovation.

The church's rector, Reverend Adolfo Garcia Duran, said the poster advertised "something that is against Christ and against the church".

The novel claims Christ's bloodline was covered up by the Catholic Church.

The Interior Ministry, which owns the church and awarded the renovation contract to an external company, said the poster would be removed in the next week.

The poster, which features a picture of Da Vinci's Mona Lisa and the film's title, was plastered across the church's scaffold-covered facade.

Church attacks

Reverend Marco Fibbi, a spokesman for Rome's Vicariate, the Italian capital's church authority, said the poster had been "causing a problem".

He said: "This movie is not reputed to be particularly appreciated by ecclesiastic circles."

Audrey Tautou and Tom Hanks in The Da Vinci Code
The film will be premiered at the Cannes Film Festival on 17 May

The Vicariate had written to the Ministry, calling for the poster to be removed.

The removal of the poster is the latest attack on Dan Brown's work by Catholic Church officials.

On Good Friday, the preacher for the papal household denounced theories which he said made huge profits in denying the teachings of the Catholic Church.

Catholic group Opus Dei, which is portrayed as murderous and power-crazed in the book, has asked for a disclaimer to be placed on the film.

The film, which stars Tom Hanks and Audrey Tautou, is scheduled for release on 19 May.

The book has sold more than 40million copies worldwide.


SEE ALSO:
Brown plays down Code controversy
24 Apr 06 |  Entertainment
Decoding the Da Vinci Code author
07 Apr 06 |  Entertainment
Delays to latest Dan Brown novel
21 Apr 06 |  Entertainment
Da Vinci in new plagiarism claim
12 Apr 06 |  Entertainment
Court rejects Da Vinci copy claim
07 Apr 06 |  Entertainment


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