Susan Sarandon Brands Pope Benedict XVI A 'Nazi'
10/17/2011 2:22pm EDT
Outspoken Hollywood veteran Susan Sarandon is courting controversy with Catholic leaders after calling German pontiff Pope Benedict XVI a "Nazi".
The Oscar winner made the remarks on Saturday during a Hamptons Film Festival interview with actor/director Bob Balaban, during which she recalled sending a copy of the book Dead Man Walking - about Sister Helen Prejean's special relationship with death row prisoner Matthew Poncelet - to Pope John Paul II.
Clarifying her story, she said, "The last one (pope), not this Nazi one we have now."
According to Newsday.com, Balaban attempted to skirt around the star's comments, only for Sarandon to repeat it again, prompting audience members at the Bay Street Theatre in Sag Harbor to laugh.
Sarandon portrayed Prejean in 1995's big screen adaptation of Dead Man Walking, for which she won the Best Actress Academy Award.
Early on in his papacy, representatives for Pope Benedict XVI were forced to deny allegations the religious leader had been a member of the Hitler Youth Nazi group as a teen.