Showtime's 'Vatican' casts Bruno Ganz as the pope

bruno-ganz-vatican-gi.jpgActor Bruno Ganz, who's probably best known for playing Hitler in the movie "Downfall" and its many Internet parodies, is taking on another world leader -- the pope -- in his next role.

Ganz has joined the cast of Showtime's pilot "The Vatican," a drama pilot starring Kyle Chandler as the archbishop of New York and focusing on the politics in the upper reaches of the Catholic Church. Ganz plays the fictional Pope Sixtus VI in the pilot, a pontiff who is worried about how his legacy will be portrayed.

The cast also includes Anna Friel ("Pushing Daisies") as Chandler's sister, Matthew Goode ("Watchmen") as the papal secretary, Sebastian Koch as a cardinal and Ewen Bremner as a priest who investigates claims of miracles.

Ganz earned wide acclaim for his portrayal of Adolf Hitler in "Downfall." His credits also include "Unknown," "The Reader" and "Wings of Desire"; "The Vatican" will be his first TV series in the United States.

Here is one of the dozens and dozens of "Downfall" parodies that live online, as Hitler rants about hipsters taking over one of his favorite spots (NSFW language in the subtitles).

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