Saturday, March 19, 2016

Actors who have portrayed Jesus or God in movies and TV shows

In my last post, I listed 58 actors who have played the devil in live-action movies and TV shows.
Since I covered the darkness, it is only fair to cover the light as well.
My new list includes 24 actors who have played Jesus and 102 actors who have played God.
My list excludes animated versions of God and Jesus as well as movies and TV shows that just presented the voice of God.

Actors who have played Jesus:

Christian Bale, “Mary, Mother of Jesus” (1999)
Jim Caviezel, “The Passion of the Christ” (2004)
Henry Ian Cusick, “The Gospel of John” (2003)
Willem Dafoe, “The Last Temptation of Christ” (1988)
Brian Deacon, “Jesus” (1979)
Juan Pablo Di Pace, “A.D. The Bible Continues” (2015)
Will Ferrell, “Superstar” (1999)
Victor Garber, “Godspell” (1973)
Adam Greaves-Neal, “The Young Messiah” (2016)
Jeffrey Hunter, “King of Kings” (1961)
Enrique Irazoqui, “The Gospel According to St. Matthew” (1964)
Gerald “Slink” Johnson, “Black Jesus” (2014-present)
Ewan McGregor, “Last Days in the Desert” (2015)
Mike Mohrhardt, “Heaven is For Real” (2014)
Diogo Morgado, “The Bible” (2013) and “Son of God” (2014)
Ted Neeley, “Jesus Christ Superstar” (1973)
Robert Powell, “Jesus of Nazareth” (1977)
Chris Sarandon, “The Day Christ Died” (1980)
Jeremy Sisto, “Jesus” (1999)
Haaz Sleiman, “Killing Jesus” (2015)
John Kay Steel, “The Life of Jesus: The Revolutionary” (1998)
Robert Torti, “Reefer Madness” (2005)
Max von Sydow, “The Greatest Story Ever Told” (1965)
H.B. Warner, “The King of Kings” (1927)

Actors who have played God:

Scott Bairstow, “Touched by an Angel” (2003)
George Burns, “Oh, God!” (1977), “Oh, God! Book II” (1980) and “Oh, God! You Devil” (1984)
Rodney Dangerfield, “Angels with Angles” (2005)
Morgan Freeman, “Bruce Almighty” (2003) and “Evan Almighty” (2007)
Whoopi Goldberg, “A Little Bit of Heaven” (2011)
Charlton Heston, “Almost an Angel” (1990)
Rex Ingram, “The Green Pastures” (1936)
Groucho Marx, “Skidoo” (1968)
Ferdy Mayne, “Night Train to Terror” (1985)
Alanis Morissette, “Dogma” (1999)
Robert Morley, “Second Time Lucky” (1984)
George Plimpton. “Religion, Inc.” aka “A Fool and His Money” (1989)
Richard Pryor, “In God We Tru$t” (1980)
Ralph Richardson, “Time Bandits” (1981)
Maurice Roeves, “The Acid House” (1998)
Tucker Smallwood, “The Sarah Silverman Program” (2007-2010)
Paul Sorvino, “The Devil’s Carnival” (2012)

In addition to these performances, 85 actors played God in cameos on the TV series “Joan of Arcadia” (2003-2005). They included, Zachary Quinto, Curtis Armstrong and Sherri Shepherd. (See lists on IMDb and Wikipedia.)

Actors who have played both the devil and God or Jesus:

As a bonus, I count four actors who have portrayed both the devil and God or Jesus.
  • George Burns played God in the movie “Oh God!” (1977) and its sequel “Oh, God! Book II” (1980). He played both God and the devil in the third film “Oh God! You Devil” (1984).
  • Rodney Dangerfield played God in “Angels with Angles” (2005) and Lucifer in “Little Nicky” (2000)
  • Willem Dafoe played Jesus in “The Last Temptation of Christ” (1988) and played Satan in a 2013 Mercedes-Benz Super Bowl commercial.
  • Diogo Morgado played “The Man,” the devil incarnate on the TV series “The Messengers” (2015). He previously played Jesus in the TV mini-series “The Bible” (2013) and its movie adaptation “Son of God” (2014).

Photo: Morgan Freeman as God in “Bruce Almighty.” 

Friday, March 18, 2016

Actors who have played the devil in movies and TV shows

The Fox TV network recently came under fire from a Christian group for its DC Comics-based series “Lucifer.”
The television watchdog group One Million Moms criticized the show, which it says “glorifies Satan as a caring, likable person in human flesh.”
The group warns that the show is “spiritually dangerous” because it makes the devil “look cool and irresistible to women,” according to Christian Today.
“Late Night” host Seth Meyers joked about the controversy: “The advocacy group One Million Moms has called for a boycott of the new Fox show ‘Lucifer’ because they believe the series ‘glorifies Satan,’ and is complaining to the show’s main sponsor, Olive Garden. Wait, Olive Garden sponsors Lucifer? I always assumed it was the other way around.”
Other news sites reporting on the controversy include the Christian Post, and the Daily Beast.
The Fox show stars Welsh actor Tom Ellis as Lucifer Morningstar, the devil on vacation from hell and living in L.A. as a nightclub owner who also helps the police solve crimes.
Over on the CW drama “Supernatural,” Mark Pellegrino plays Lucifer as decidedly more evil and violent.
Those portrayals of Lucifer got me thinking about how many other actors have played the devil.
So I decided to put together a list.
Assembling a list of actors who have played Satan or Lucifer is not easy. Sometimes an evil character is only implied to be the devil or could be just an agent of Satan.
Also, for my list, I excluded voice actors in animated movies and TV shows as well as portrayals of Hades from Greek mythology.
My list includes 58 actors who have played the devil, Satan or Lucifer in TV shows, mini-series and movies. Among those actors are four women, including the sinfully hot Elizabeth Hurley and Jennifer Love Hewitt.

Actors who have played the devil in TV shows:

Tom Ellis, “Lucifer” (2016)
John Glover, “Brimstone” (1998-1999)
Mackenzie Gray, “The Collector” (2004–2006)
Diogo Morgado, “The Messengers” (2015)
Mohamen Mehdi Ouazanni, “The Bible” (2013)
Mandy Patinkin, “Touched by an Angel” (2001)
Mark Pellegrino, “Supernatural” (2009-present)
John Schneider. “Touched by an Angel” (1995-2001), “Holyman Undercover” (2010)
David Ogden Stiers, “Touched by an Angel” (2003)
Ray Wise, “Reaper” (2007-2009)

Actors who have played the devil in movies:

Victor Buono, “The Evil” (1978)
George Burns, “Oh, God! You Devil” (1984)
Gabriel Byrne, “End of Days” (1999)
Rosalinda Celentano, “The Passion of the Christ” (2004)
Lon Chaney Jr., “The Devil’s Messenger” (1961)
James Coco, “Hunk” (1987)
Peter Cook, “Bedazzled” (1967)
Bill Cosby, “The Devil and Max Devlin” (1981)
Laird Cregar, “Heaven Can Wait” (1943)
Billy Crystal, “Deconstructing Harry” (1997)
Tim Curry, “Legend” (1985)
Rodney Dangerfield, “Little Nicky” (2000)
Robert De Niro, “Angel Heart” (1987)
Daniel Emilfork, “The Devil’s Nightmare” (1971)
Peter Fonda, “Ghost Rider” (2007)
Tony Giorgio, “Night Train to Terror” (1985)
Jeff Goldblum, “Mister Frost” (1990)
Dave Grohl, “Tenacious D In the Pick Of Destiny” (2006)
Robert Helpmann, “Second Time Lucky” (1984)
Elizabeth Hurley, “Bedazzled” (2000)
Walter Huston, “The Devil and Daniel Webster” (1941)
Jeffrey Jones, “Stay Tuned” (1992)
Harvey Keitel, “Little Nicky” (2000)
Eriq La Salle, “Crazy as Hell” (2002)
Christopher Lee, “Poor Devil” (1973)
Jennifer Love Hewitt, “Shortcut to Happiness” (2007)
Malcolm McDowell, “Suing the Devil” (2011)
Viggo Mortensen, “The Prophecy” (1995)
Jack Nicholson, “The Witches of Eastwick” (1987)
Jenny O’Hara, “The Devil” (2010)
Al Pacino, “The Devil’s Advocate” (1997)
Bruce Payne, “Switch” (1991)
Vincent Price, “The Story of Mankind” (1957)
Claude Rains, “Angel on My Shoulder” (1946)
John Ritter, “Wholly Moses!” (1980)
Adam Sandler, “Dirty Work” (1998)
Telly Savalas, “Lisa and the Devil” (1973)
G. Tito Shaw, “Petey Wheatstraw” (1977)
Phil Silvers, “Damn Yankees!” (1967)
Terence Stamp, “The Company of Wolves” (1984)
Peter Stormare, “Constantine” (2005)
Max von Sydow, “Needful Things” (1993)
Clay Tanner, “Rosemary's Baby” (1968)
Tom Waits, “The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus” (2009)
Ray Walston, “Damn Yankees” (1958)
David Warner, “Time Bandits” (1981)
Clarence Williams III, “Tales from the Hood” (1995)
Terrance Zdunich, “The Devil’s Carnival” (2012)

Photos: Tom Ellis, star of “Lucifer” (top); and Elizabeth Hurley as the devil in “Bedazzled” (2000).

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Museum expert Victor Danilov says some museums too expensive for families

Museum expert Victor Danilov says one of his proudest achievements as director and president of the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago is that he kept it free during his 15 years at the museum.
After he left in 1987, the museum instituted an admission fee and hasn’t looked back since.
“The thing that shocks me these days is what it costs to go to a museum,” Danilov told me by phone Monday. “We’re talking about $15 or $20 to go to a museum. One thing that I’m especially proud of doing over the years: when I was the director for 12 of the 15 years (at the Museum of Science and Industry), and my predecessor was also proud, that he never had to charge admission to the museum. And I continued that until I retired.”
Danilov wanted to make the museum experience open to as many people as possible.
“I had almost 4 million people attending the museum free (each year) and as soon as I retired they applied an admission fee to help cover the expenses and now it’s $15 to go to see that museum. And the attendance is a million and a half as opposed to 4 million. So it dropped off that much mainly because of the admission.”
Actually, entry to the museum is now $18 for adults and $11 for children ages 3-11. But the price can go much higher if you add in special exhibits and activities.
The admission fees are keeping more families with children from visiting the museum.
“When they started charging admission, they started slowly at $5 and gradually it ran up to $15,” Danilov said. “Some museums charge even more than that these days. They need the money but there ought to be some other way of raising the money besides charging families these big numbers, particularly if they have children to take. It can cost them $50 just to get into the museum.”
Danilov, 91, is retired and living in Evanston, Illinois. He is the author of 28 non-fiction books and more than half of them are on museums. His last book was “Famous Americans: A Directory of Museums, Historic Sites, and Memorials” (2013).
Danilov is a leading figure in the museum world. He was the founder and director of the Museum Management Program at the University of Colorado from 1988 to 2003. He holds degrees from Pennsylvania State University, Northwestern University, and University of Colorado, and has been an officer in national and international museum organizations.
He is a life trustee on the board of trustees at the Museum of Science and Industry.
He got into the museum business through a fortunate turn of events.
“I was a journalist originally,” Danilov said. “I was a reporter and rewrite (person) for the Chicago Daily News ... and out of that I did some other jobs. I taught journalism at several universities and was the editor of a number of science magazines.”
He was working for a publication on industrial research and technology when he was hired to work in 1972 with the then-president of the museum.
“I had no experience with museums before that except as a visitor. But I sort of got a short course in a year or two,” he said.
Danilov became part of the science museum movement and helped other groups start their own museums.

Photos: Covers of two Victor Danilov museum books.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Halls of fame: a review of physical and virtual halls

I’ve spent the last couple of weeks writing about hall of fame museums and exhibits on Tech-media-tainment.
What follows is a roundup of my recent articles on the subject and few older ones.

Victor Danilov wrote the book on halls of fame (March 7, 2016)

Technology industry halls of fame (March 6, 2016)

Defunct halls of fame: Celebrity lingerie, Barbie dolls, cockroaches (Feb. 29, 2016)

14 more unusual physical halls of fame (Feb. 28, 2016)

10 more unusual virtual halls of fame (Feb. 25, 2016)

12 unusual virtual halls of fame (Feb. 20, 2016)

19 hall-of-fame museums in the works (Feb. 16, 2016)

The 10 most unusual halls of fame you can physically visit (Feb. 15, 2016)

Halls of fame in North America: a comprehensive list (Feb. 14, 2016)

Pinball Hall of Fame a flippin’ good time (Jan. 17, 2015)

Robot Hall of Fame hits another rough patch (Aug. 30, 2014)

Women who deserve to be in the Bikinis Hall of Fame (Aug. 26, 2014)

Bikinis Hall of Fame still a one-off (Aug. 24, 2014)

Photos: Toy Hall of Fame (top) and Burlesque Hall of Fame.

Monday, March 7, 2016

Victor Danilov wrote the book on halls of fame

In my research on halls of fame, I learned through Google Books about the 1997 book “Hall of Fame Museums: A Reference Guide” by Victor J. Danilov.
His book appears to be the last comprehensive reference guide to halls of fame produced.
Before his tome, the last major work on the subject was published 20 years earlier. That earlier guide was “The Big Book of Halls of Fame in the United States and Canada” (1977) by Paul Soderberg and Helen Washington.
Danilov was the director and/or president of the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago for 15 years, and the founder and director of the Museum Management Program at the University of Colorado from 1988 to 2003. He was the author of more than two dozen books, mostly on the museum field.
Next year will be the 20-year anniversary of Danilov’s book, so it might be time for a new reference guide. But given the state of book publishing, such a work might be an online-only reference. The closest I’ve seen to that is the listing of halls of fame on Wikipedia. But it is incomplete.
Danilov’s book listed some 274 hall of fame museums and exhibits located at 242 sites in 11 countries. Some sites housed more than one hall of fame. He also included walks of fame and stadium rings of fame.
Looking at just hall of fame museums in North America, I counted 213 sites in the Danilov book. (I excluded three that I didn’t consider to be true halls of fame.) Of those, 60 are now closed, or 28% of the total from 1997.
But a lot of new ones have popped up in the last 19 years.
My current list of halls of fame in North America has over 300 museums and exhibits you can physically visit.

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Technology industry halls of fame

The information technology industry is relatively young but already has several halls of fame.
What follows are halls of fame that honor people and technologies that helped shape the computer industry and related fields.

IT Hall of Fame

Information technology trade industry group CompTIA started the IT Hall of Fame in 2010 to honor the industry’s top business leaders and innovators.
The virtual shrine built on the legacy of an earlier hall of fame established by industry publication CRN. Honorees from the CRN Industry Hall of Fame were grandfathered into CompTIA’s new IT Hall of Fame. They include Bill Gates of Microsoft, William Hewlett and Dave Packard of Hewlett-Packard, Steve Jobs of Apple, and Andy Grove of Intel.

Computer Hall of Fame

The San Diego Computer Museum created the Computer Hall of Fame in the mid-1980s. The museum used to exhibit historic computer equipment, software and manuals, but those items are now in the archives at San Diego State University. The hall of fame is maintained as a virtual shrine online.

Internet Hall of Fame

The Internet Society created the Internet Hall of Fame in 2012. The Internet Hall of Fame is a recognition program and virtual museum that celebrates the history of the Internet and the individuals whose contributions have made the Internet, its worldwide availability and use, and its transformative nature possible.

Consumer Electronics Hall of Fame

The Consumer Electronics Hall of Fame recognizes the contributions of the pioneers, visionaries and leaders in the consumer electronics industry. The Consumer Technology Association created the CE Hall of Fame in 2000. Each year a new group of inventors, engineers, business leaders, retailers and journalists are inducted into the CE Hall of Fame, which exists only online.

Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences Hall of Fame

Since 1998, the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences has annually inducted into its hall of fame video game developers who have made revolutionary and innovative achievements in the video game and PC game industry.
The latest to be inducted in the AIAS Hall of Fame was Hideo Kojima, creator of the “Metal Gear Solid” game series. He was inducted on Feb. 18 at the 19th annual DICE Awards in Las Vegas.

Robot Hall of Fame

The School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, created the Robot Hall of Fame in 2003 to recognize notable robots in science, industry and entertainment. Many of the inductees are enshrined at the Roboworld exhibit at the Carnegie Science Center in Pittsburgh.
Unfortunately the Robot Hall of Fame is struggling financially. It hasn’t inducted a new class of robots since 2012.