Aside from religion, Pope Francis – A man of his Word was "intended to be a personal journey with Pope Francis" placing his ideas at the heart of the documentary by walking in his footsteps. Keen to convey the Pope's message of compassion, Wim Wenders adopted a visual and narrative style for the film to establish contact with people from all walks of life and backgrounds and capture a "section of humanity engaged in an active discussion with the Pope".
Approached by the Vatican in 2013, Wim Wenders confesses to having been given complete freedom on this project, including full control over the final cut. Along with an unrestricted access to the Vatican's photo archive, the filmmaker also received permission to film four long interviews with the 266th Pope. Spanning two years, these discussions with the former Cardinal of Buenos Aires Jorge Mario Bergoglio underpin a documentary that carries a universal message and was filmed using several cameras. The decision to opt for this process allowed "the Pope's extraordinary spontaneity, openness and simplicity" to be expressed, that of "a man who lives in accordance with the principles he preaches".
This work is the 18th film to appear in Selection by the director of Paris Texas, Palme d’or winner in 1984. In the past, the German filmmaker has also been awarded Best Director Award for Der Himmel Über Berlin in 1987, the Jury's Grand Prize for In Weiter Ferne, So Nah! in 1993, and the Special Prize Un Certain Regard for The Salt of the Earth.