|March 31, 2014 issue of Time|
they go to this guy to make sure they're not stepping on any toes and alienating key audiences. The article also talks a little bit about the marketing process and the history of Biblical films. It's a short article, but a timely one, since the latest movie based on Scripture is Noah-based on the titular character and his classic Ark-and came out on the 28th.
To be honest, I was somewhat surprised to see that studios actually showed some concern over the stories they wanted to tell. One example the article gave was how Bock worked with the producers of The Bible TV miniseries. He actually had a meeting with over 40 theologians and scholars in order to go over the script and work on any errors. Another example, pertaining to Noah, is how the film was made in 6 different versions that were shown to Christian audiences. The movie has had a pretty troubled production, as the studio, Paramount, and the director, Darren Aronofsky (a professed atheist), argued greatly over the direction of the film.
On the other hand, I guess it should make some sense if studios are taking care of the material. Christians are still the majority religious group in America, and The Passion of The Christ raked in over $370 million domestically, according to the article. Add those factors together, and it makes sense: Studios simply see another financial opportunity--a pretty big one. And they can't afford to lose it.
I was a little disappointed to see that the writer did not include other Bible-themed movies like the films of Sherwood Pictures (Fireproof, Courageous), To Save a Life, and the latest release from the churches, God's Not Dead, which released the same time as Noah. But then again, the writer probably wasn't familiar with these films, and even if he was, the movies don't really have any relevance to the writer's focus on Hollywood-made Bible movies. I guess I was expecting a broader look at these types of films as a cultural trend, and, to my frustration, I didn't get it. Oh well. The article was still worth the read.
|Directed by Darren Aronofsky, starring Russell Crowe.|
But who knows (besides God)? Maybe this is a good thing. Maybe, as the article says with Bock's words, this is "a return of the Christian community's role as a patron of the arts." Will Christians have greater opportunities to work in film because of Noah and the Son of God miniseries? I'd like to see that happen. In the meantime, I guess I'll have to settle for Ridley Scott's 2014 release, Exodus. Maybe I'll get to see the fall of Jericho...