The bizarre video clip shows Split-Dalmatia County Prefect Blazenko Boban bragging to the Minister of Tourism about helping to thwart the filming of a horror movie Omen 666 back in 2005. He thought was telling a funny anecdote while touring the Roman ruins of Salona. But he may have said too much.
Horror movies and religious feelings
Solin and Split were some of the filming locations for a remake of the horror classic – Omen. By December of 2005, the production attained all the necessary permits by the Ministry of Culture to shoot in historical locations of Salona and Split. However, after the details of the movie became known, the local Catholic Church officials became raising their voices against the film. Omen 666 is a story of the Antichrist being born and adopted by an unsuspecting family. It relies heavily on biblical themes. According to Boban himself, the scene with the Antichrist rising up from a grave in Salona caused the most controversy. The Split-Makarska Arch-bishop’s Office made an official appeal to have the filming permit withdrawn. Boban began pressuring the Minister of Culture about it, but with no luck. Eventually, he organised a few people “to stage” a fire on the set. When the news of the fire reached the Minister, he revoked the filming permits. The production left Salona and Croatia.
In the movie clip where County Prefect Boban is seen telling the story, as published by Slobodna Dalmacija, the face masks are not enough to hide nervous smiles on everyone’s faces. Even though he told the story jokingly, the fact remains there actually was a fire. Not only that, but the movie director John Moore has since stated in an interview with Irish Times how the set had been vandalised and burned down. A subsequent move to a different filming location supposedly cost the film company around half a million US dollars.
Will there be a sequel?
It is incredible that such a story would come out to the public the way it did. In his careless attempt at comedy, County Prefect Boban might have bitten off more than he could chew. This story first came out almost a week ago and it was fairly quickly put to rest. The original police report was for a crime of “destroying and damaging private property”. There is an expiry deadline for this type of crime in Croatia during which it needs to get to court. This deadline has passed. However, Telegram.hr reports State Attorney’s Office in Split is still looking into the case in light of new information. Because of the amount of incurred damages and the description of the event, it is apparently still possible to change the charge into a more serious one with a longer expiry deadline. While unlikely, if this case does ever get to court, it will be one of the more unusual stories from the wild world of Croatian politics.
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