Mark Wahlberg has made some real stinkers in his long and storied career as an actor. So when asked if there was one movie he’d like to be forgiven for, some would think the immediate answer would be one of the two Transformers movies he’s appeared in, or the truly terrible M. Night Shyamalan thriller The Happening. But no, the devote Catholic actually chose the acclaimed Oscar-nominated Paul Thomas Anderson drama Boogie Nights.
Sure, Boogie Nights was both a critical and commercial hit, and still has a legion of fans to this day. But when asked if he’s ever prayed to God for forgiveness when it comes to one of his movies, he didn’t hesitate to name Boogie Nights. The actor was with Cardinal Blase Cupich this past Friday, when he said this about answering for some of his movie sins.
“I just always hope that God is a movie fan and also forgiving, because I’ve made some poor choices in my past.”
Mark Wahlberg can probably thank Dirk Diggler for giving him the career he has today. Sure, he made a few films before Boogie Nights premiered in 1997. But the 1970s-era drama set in the world of Adult Entertainment was the one that put him on the map, and paved the way for where he is now.
Mark was at the UIC Pavillion with Cardinal Cupich in an effort to get more young people into the church. And Boogie Nights is not a movie they will be showing at any church function anytime soon. But Wahlberg hopes some of his past actions and troubled youth help Chicago youngsters identify, learning that it is possible to turn one’s life around. In his early days growing up in Boston, Wahlberg spent time in prison for a racist assault on a Vietnamese immigrant, and often found himself caught up in violent crime.
“I’ve never been shy about sharing my past and the bad decisions I’ve made and being affiliated with gangs, being incarcerated, so absolutely I think they can identify with me on a personal level, and that’s why I’ve continued to try to do as much as I can to help young people. It’s one thing to give money, or to start programs, but to be there and be able to talk to them, and tell them there is someone who has been through the same things they are going through and was able to turn their life around, and turn it into a big positive. That’s always important.”
More than 1000 worshippers joined Cupich and Wahlberg for this event. Wahlberg told the crowd that he always finds time to pray every day, and that he always goes to bed by 7:30pm, which might sound really early to some. Despite giving some serious answers to questions about life and spirituality, Mark Wahlberg did find time to joke around with the audience, and appeared to be having a good time. You can read the rest of his statements at The Chicago Tribune.