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The Last Confession
The Last Confession poster.jpg
Written by Roger Crane
Characters Giovanni Benelli
Pope John Paul I
Jean-Marie Villot
Paul Marcinkus
Pope Paul VI
Pericle Felici
Alfredo Ottaviani
Date premiered 27 April 2007
Original language English
Genre Religious, Crime, Drama
Setting Vatican City, 1978

The Last Confession is a stage play by Roger Crane based around the election and death of Pope John Paul I. The play follows Giovanni Benelli (David Suchet) who recounts, during his last confession, his role in the death of John Paul and how this led him to lose his faith.


Disturbed by the corruption in Vatican City, caused mainly by Paul Marcinkus and Jean-Marie Villot, Benelli attempts to manipulate the August 1978 conclave and elect Albino Luciani as Pope. The plan succeeds and Luciani becomes Pope John Paul I but his unconventional views and actions make him enemies in the Curia.

Just thirty three days into his reign, John Paul dies suddenly and Benelli investigates the death, suspecting the Pope was murdered. Realising that a request for an autopsy would damage the church, Benelli decides to end the investigation and tries to become Pope himself. This time his efforts to manipulate the conclave fail and a compromise candidate, Karol Wojtyła, is elected Pope.


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