While it wasn't as ambitious a meeting as Russell Crowe had in mind initially, the "Noah" actor, director Darren Aronofsky, and Paramount executive Rob Moore did manage to receive a brief meeting this morning with Pope Francis. 

Deadline is reporting that the trio was hosted by the Vatican "in the official VIP section of this morning’s Udienza." That decision came after several days of heated rumors from various sources suggesting that the Vatican wasn't interested in getting wrapped up in a promotion for a Hollywood movie. Paramount, Aronofsky and Crowe were careful to stress that they were instead eager to show the Holy Father a film they believed aligns with his own Christian values. 

While the film screening was not to be (an official for the Vatican said earlier that the pope does not watch films), Aronofsky was nonetheless moved by the experience of attending the pope's mass and briefly meeting him. 

“Pope Francis’ comments on stewardship and our responsibility to the natural world are inspirational and of the utmost importance,” Aronofsky said after the meeting. “When the opportunity to hear him speak in person on the anniversary of his first year in office I couldn’t miss the chance to listen and learn.”

"Noah" opens in theaters on March 28. You can see the final trailer for the film below. 

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Michael d'Estries ( @michaeldestries ) covers science, technology, art, and the beautiful, unusual corners of our incredible world.

Russell Crowe and Darren Aronofsky meet Pope Francis ahead of 'Noah' premiere
After days of rumors suggesting a meet-and-greet wasn't going to happen, Deadline confirms that the pair did briefly meet with the pontiff.