In the light of the recent success of the epic biblical story Noah, staring Russel Crowe the question can be asked: Is the Bible making a come back?
If I was to put to you the words ‘Hollywood and The Bible’, what would your first reaction be? Would you think of the goodness and faith immersed in the Bible versus the heroic but also sexualised and scandalous world of Hollywood? Or would the rolls be reversed? Would you see this Holy Book as strict and old fashioned, trying to put a halt on an ever moving and diverse world?
While it can be a complex and somewhat sensitive issue, nowadays you generally don’t associate one with the other. To imagine the likes of Gerald Butler playing the part of the devout Moses or for Scarlett Johansson as the somewhat seductive character of Eve, almost sounds farfetched. However the Bible has stemmed some of Hollywood’s greatest and most popular films.
For the world of movies, the Bible has been a true inspiration. However, it was not its spiritual wisdom or moral guidance it craved, but more for its cunning plots, dark passion and tales of deceit.
The 20th Century gave birth to some of the world’s greatest actors but it was these powerful biblical stories that contributed to their success. Such actors as Richard Harris who played the fiery tempered Cain, in La Bibbia (1966), Peter O’ Toole who on the part of the three angels in Bible: In the Beginning (1966) and furthermore Charlton Heston was nominated for a Golden Globe award for his part as Moses in the 1956 version of The Ten Commandments. While some of the tales were slightly altered for the captivation of the audience The Ten Commandments, directed by Cecil B. DeMille, was one of the most successful films of its time, grossing over $65million at the US Box office, being in the same league as all-time favourite Gone with the Wind.
So what is in store for those devout Hollywood movie fans? Noah hit the box office last weekend with a successful $43.7, accompanied by uplifting reviews such as The Telegraph, describing it as ‘astonishing and miraculous.’
Next in line will feature the young and very talented Christian Bale in Ridley Scott’s adaptation of the famous Exodus; which is set for release this December.
Bible stories have given rise to some of the most influential actors in the past who have left their mark on the industry. Is it possible that history maybe repeating itself?