A revamped statue of Pope John Paul II has been unveiled in Rome after the first one was pilloried by the public and the Vatican.

Artist Oliviero Rainaldi said he is pleased with the final product, saying it matches his original vision.

When the statue was first unveiled in front of Rome's main train station in May 2011, it was widely criticised by passers-by as looking more like Fascist dictator Benito Mussolini than the beloved Polish pope.

He blamed foundry workers for not assembling it properly the first time around.

Even the Vatican's own art critic wrote that it looked like a "bomb" had landed.

The new statue focuses on the pope's face. He smiles now and has a neck and more defined chin. The bronze tone is also evened out.