Something to look forward to this Christmas. New Line Cinema will release the film Nativity, which will follow the life of Mary and Joseph before the birth of Jesus. Rumor is that the Whale Rider girl will be Mary. And seriously, don't be surprised if they cast Ashton Kutcher as Joseph.
I guess this news makes me both delighted and disappointed. I'm glad that Hollywood is starting to, once again, make films out of Biblical narratives. It's the 50th anniversary of Cecil B. DeMille's The Ten Commandments, a quality film in my opinion. True, there's some definite over-acting [thank you Mr Heston and Mr Brynner] but it was fifty stinkin' years ago! Unfortunately, movie makers have mostly steered clear of trying to retell Bible stories.
But, while I'm excited, part of me is leery of this onslaught of Bible-based movies. Ever since Mel Gibson's Passion Of The Christ grossed over $600 million, film companies have seen the kind of profits that the Christian demographic is capable of bringing in. The Chronicles of Narnia [not Biblical but I think C.S. Lewis wrote some of the Bible], which also made significant money, reinforced this idea. Do Christians really want to be known as a significant marketing demographic? I'm not sure. That's why I'm a little torn.
Although I must admit, if this trend creates the possibility that I get to see Phinehas the movie, then I'm all for it, baby!