Last night, Susan Sarandon appeared at the Bay Street Theater in Sag Harbor for an interview with Bob Balaban. When discussing Dead Man Walking, Sarandon said she sent a copy of the book it was based on to the Pope, then added, “The last one, not this Nazi one we have now.” Newsday reports that Balaban “gently tut-tutted” the comment, but Sarandon said it again. In the wardrobe of controversial things celebrities say, calling the Pope a Nazi is the sequined tube top: rarely worn but sure to invite more attention then desired.
As Sinead O’Conner and Hank Williams Jr. can attest, the Pope and Nazis are topics that can cause enough controversy to alter entire careers. Using them together in one compact, super-controversial sound bite is bound to cause outrage. Sarandon is known for being politically outspoken, and it will be interesting to see if the inevitable backlash will roll off her back.
If not, she will be expected to follow the celebrity apology guide:
1) If on Twitter, tweet that you never meant to offend anyone. 2) Release a statement on your website written by a publicist. 3) Appear at a charity event and briefly mention your regrets before moving on to “more important” matters. 4) Stay away until you have something to promote. 5) A year ago, this step would have been “Go on Larry King Live.” Now you have a couple options for your final grand apology, most likely The View or King’s replacement, Piers Morgan.