Passion of the Christ translator speaking at University

William Fulco, S.J. discussing ancient languages in modern films and the risk of using them | February 1, 2006

William Fulco, S.J., who served as the archaeological and theological consultant to Mel Gibson in the production of The Passion of the Christ, is speaking on ancient languages in modern films on Saturday, Feb. 18, at 4:00 p.m. in the Conaton Boardroom. This event is free and open to the public and includes a reception following the presentation.

Fulco translated all the lines from The Passion of the Christ into Aramaic and Latin, as well as coaching all of the actors with their difficult lines. He is presently working with actor Vin Diesel and his One Race Films production company on a new film, Cannae, which depicts Hannibal and the Punic Wars against Rome. The entire film in restored Punic (a late dialect of Phoenician), Classical Latin and Greek.

Fulco holds the National Endowment for the Humanities Chair in Ancient Mediterranean Studies at Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles. Previously he taught scripture at the Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley, and oversaw the doctoral program in Ancient Near Eastern Religions at the University of California, where he taught the Ph.D. cycle of Comparative Semitic Linguistics. He has also lectured in archaeology at USC, in Jerusalem, Cairo and Amman, Jordan.

His talk, “Ancient Languages in Modern Films: A Risky Business,” is part of the 2006 Robert J. Murray lecture series. The series is named in honor of Robert J. Murray, professor of classics (1960-1997), for his many contributions to Xavier University and the Honors Bachelor of Arts program.