Denzel Washington insisted on making his violent character in new movie MAN ON FIRE a Christian, to give the role more depth.

The OSCAR-winning actor - who can quote most of the Bible verbatim - left the movie's director TONY SCOTT so impressed with his spiritual slant on his role as a troubled ex-assassin employed to protect a Mexican family, it soon became a vital part of the film.

Washington says, "I told him about the Book of Romans, about coming out of the darkness into the light, and how God appoints certain people whose job it is to look after others who are weak.

"He liked that idea and it became part of the script.

"That become a handle for me to a spiritual journey. He's sitting there with one hand on the bottle and the other hand on the Bible and you think, what happened to him?"

10/09/2004 09:12