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Fact Check: Did Jim Caviezel Refuse To Work With Robert De Niro Because He Was 'Ungodly'?

Wikimedia Commons
Wikimedia Commons

Claim:

In December 2023, actor Jim Caviezel refused to work with Robert De Niro on a movie and called him "an awful, ungodly man."

Rating:

Rating: Labeled Satire
Rating: Labeled Satire

On Dec. 5, 2023, the Dunning-Kruger Times, a publication associated with the America’s Last Line of Defense (ALLOD) network of websites and social media pages, published an article claiming that U.S. actor Jim Caviezel had turned down a role in an unnamed film because he did not want to work with Robert De Niro. According to the article, which began as follows, Caviezel called De Niro "awful" and "ungodly."

Jim Caviezel Refuses to Work with Robert DeNiro: 'He’s an Awful, Ungodly Man'

'Sound of Freedom' and 'Passion of the Christ' star Jim Caviezel turned down a lucrative role that would have only taken hours to film for one reason and one reason alone: Robert DeNiro was also cast for the scene.

“I won’t work with him,” said Caviezel, “He’s an awful, ungodly man. Plus it gets really awkward talking to him face-to-face knowing he’s wearing 6-inch platform shoes.”

The article was also shared on an America's Last Line of Defense Facebook page, America – Love It Or Leave It, where the post was liked over 40,000 times. Most of the 7,500 comments on the Facebook post supported Caviezel, saying things like, "I agree completely, stand strong to your faith. God bless."

However, the story was not a recounting of real events. The Dunning-Kruger Times (along with the entire America's Last Line of Defense network) describes its output as being satire. A page on the Dunning-Kruger Times site explains further:

Everything on this website is fiction. It is not a lie and it is not fake news because it is not real. If you believe that it is real, you should have your head examined. Any similarities between this site’s pure fantasy and actual people, places, and events are purely coincidental and all images should be considered altered and satirical.

On Nov. 27, 2023, at the Gotham Awards, a ceremony dedicated to independent films, De Niro was about to give a speech when he stopped, explaining to the audience that part of his original speech had been edited without his knowledge. Off of his phone, De Niro read the unedited version, which criticized the administration of former U.S. President Donald Trump and recent changes to the history curriculum in Florida. Trump fired back on Truth Social, his Twitter-esque platform.

Caviezel is most famous for his role as Jesus in Mel Gibson's "The Passion of the Christ," but recently came back into the spotlight by starring in "Sound of Freedom," a 2023 independent film that has been accused of catering to QAnon conspiracy theories, something the film's distributors have denied. The actor has been an open supporter of Trump in the past.

For background, here is why we sometimes write about satire/humor.

Sources:

“About Us.” Dunning-Kruger-Times.Com, https://dunning-kruger-times.com/about-us/. Accessed 6 Dec. 2023.

Culture, Shannon Power Pop, and Entertainment Reporter. “‘Sound of Freedom’ Star Jim Caviezel Compares Donald Trump to King David.” Newsweek, 14 Sept. 2023, https://www.newsweek.com/jim-caviezel-trump-king-david-sound-freedom-1826925.

Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/ALLODRetro/posts/pfbid0335wagrRdSrubooTM8FKJ1wKJmFMz5irvtbjhwsnNGj9HhWQ3tcUU2KYXomvYytUXl. Accessed 6 Dec. 2023.

Hassan, Jennifer. “Robert De Niro Says Speech Blasting Trump Was Cut at Film Awards.” Washington Post, 30 Nov. 2023. www.washingtonpost.com, https://www.washingtonpost.com/style/2023/11/28/robert-de-niro-trump-speech-gotham-awards/.

“KILLERS OF THE FLOWER MOON” Receives The Gotham Historical Icon & Creator Tribute. www.youtube.com, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LoG5Cvm0_jQ. Accessed 6 Dec. 2023.

Patriot, Flagg Eagleton-. “Jim Caviezel Refuses to Work with Robert DeNiro: ‘He’s an Awful, Ungodly Man.’” Dunning-Kruger-Times.Com, 5 Dec. 2023, https://dunning-kruger-times.com/jim-caviezel-refuses-to-work-with-robert-deniro-hes-an-awful-ungodly-man/.

Robert De Niro Tells Gotham Awards His Speech Was Edited without His Knowledge. 28 Nov. 2023. www.bbc.com, https://www.bbc.com/news/entertainment-arts-67552014.

Rubin, Rebecca. “Robert De Niro Says ‘F— Trump’ at Tony Awards, Gets Standing Ovation.” Variety, 11 June 2018, https://variety.com/2018/legit/news/robert-de-niro-trump-tonys-1202839957/.

“‘Sound of Freedom’ Is a Box Office Hit Whose Star Embraces QAnon.” Washington Post, 7 July 2023, https://www.washingtonpost.com/arts-entertainment/2023/07/07/sound-of-freedom-qanon-theories-jim-caviezel/.

“Trump Launches Belated Attack on Robert De Niro: ‘Total Loser.’” The Independent, 4 Dec. 2023, https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/tv/news/donald-trump-robert-de-niro-b2458094.html.