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'Transformers' star Shia LaBeouf transforms into Catholic after portraying Padre Pio

Kristofer Purnell - Philstar.com
'Transformers' star Shia LaBeouf transforms into Catholic after portraying Padre Pio
Composite image of Shia LaBeouf and Padre Pio
Getty Images via AFP / Rich Fury, St. Pio Foundation

MANILA, Philippines — Actor Shia LaBeouf admitted to converting to Roman Catholicism after starring in "Padre Pio" as the famous Franciscan Capuchin friar and saint.

LaBeouf sat down for a 80-minute conversation with Bishop Robert Barron of Word on Fire Catholic Ministries where he opened up on his religious briefs, hugely affected by public scandals he's been involved in.

"I didn't want to be alive anymore when all of this happened. Shame like I had never experienced before — the kind of shame that you forget how to breathe," LaBeouf shared. "You don't know where to go... but I was also in this deep desire to hold on."

The actor previously identified as an agnostic, but personal issues caused him rethink, "When my life had led to serious infliction of pain and damage on other people, I threw up my hands like, 'My plans are garbage, and I don't want to be here anymore.' And that was required to enter Pio."

Labeouf's mother is Jewish and his father is Christian. Though he was baptized as a child and had a bar mitzvah when he was 13 years old, he never fully embraced either beliefs.

Helping him discover how to portray Padre Pio was the film's director Abel Ferrara, who advised him to do research at a Catholic seminary, live with Franciscan Capuchin friars, and read the Bible.

"I know now that God was using my ego to draw me to Him. Drawing me away from worldly desires. It was all happening simultaneously," LaBeouf said.

"Padre Pio" is LaBeouf's first film since 2020's "Pieces of a Woman" and "The Tax Collector," though he appeared in the 2021 Kid Cudi documentary "A Man Named Scott."

LaBeouf is best known for his roles in "Even Stevens," the "Transformers" franchise, and the fourth "Indiana Jones" film. — Video by Bishop Robert Barron via YouTube

RELATED: Kim Chiu celebrates Padre Pio feast day with throwback post in Italy

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