By Dan Snierson
Updated August 09, 2012 at 05:40 PM EDT
Credit: Everett Collection

Edward Norton has played a man of the cloth on the big screen (Keeping the Faith, left), and he’ll commune with God again on an upcoming episode of The Simpsons. Executive producer Al Jean tells EW that the Bourne Legacy actor — who also starred as an altar boy/murder suspect in Primal Fear — will voice “the most lovable minister in the world,” and one who poses problems for Reverend Lovejoy. “He is much more popular than Reverend Lovejoy, if you can believe it, and Lovejoy is really upset and becomes a hot tub salesman,” explains Jean. “It comes down to a battle between the two of them… and there’s a surprise at the end.”

Tentatively slated to air next spring, “Pulpit Friction” marks Norton’s return to the animated comedy: He played a con artist in season 12’s “The Great Money Caper.”

Season 24 of The Simpsons kicks off Sept. 30 on Fox, and, in addition to Norton, will feature such celebrity guests as Natalie Portman, Anne Hathaway, Zooey Deschanel, Steve Carrell, and Patton Oswalt.

(Twitter: @dansnierson)

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