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How "Noah" And "Godís Not Dead" Are Making The Bible Popular Again At The Movies
BuzzFeed ^ | 03/31/2014 | Adam B. Vary

Posted on 03/31/2014 9:21:41 AM PDT by SeekAndFind

It may not quite approach the stature of building an ark to withstand an epochal flood, but the box office success of Noah this weekend — which opened with an estimated gross of $44 million — is still something of a remarkable feat. No other overtly Bible-themed feature film has opened anywhere close to that amount since 2004’s The Passion of the Christ, doubly remarkable considering that director Darren Aronofsky’s $125 million adaptation of the Old Testament story faced serious opposition from Christian groups that objected to perceived liberties the film takes with the biblical text. The film pulled in another $51 million overseas, for a total worldwide gross of $95.1 million — a very healthy start for what was nowhere close to a sure thing.

The reason is simple: Short of the phenomenal success of Mel Gibson’s film 10 years ago, and the subsequent adaptations of C.S. Lewis’ Christian-fantasy hybrid book series The Chronicles of Narnia, it has been a very long time since a Christian-themed movie made a lot of money at the box office. For the last 15 years or so, independently financed and distributed Christian films like 1999’s The Omega Code and 2008’s Fireproof have found a relatively healthy audience in limited release, but their grosses have never topped $40 million, even when adjusting for inflation.

That is certainly enough to sustain these films at a certain budget level for a niche audience, but ever since Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ pulled in $370.3 million in the U.S. in 2004, filmmakers have been striving to tap into what seems like a vastly underserved audience. Hollywood’s biggest attempt, 2006’s The Nativity Story, made just $37.6 million, and the efforts of independent producers have usually pulled in just a fraction of that amount. (One exception: Tyler Perry’s one-man industry of crowd-pleasing comedies and dramas made with a clear message rooted in Christian morality.)

Shane Harper and David A.R. White in God’s Not Dead. Pure Flix Productions

The perceived box office ceiling on Christian films, however, could be lifting. God’s Not Dead, about a Christian college student confronted by an atheist professor, opened last weekend with a remarkable $9.2 million in just 780 theaters, and it grossed another $9.1 million after expanding into 398 more theaters this weekend, for $22 million total. At this pace, it could easily clear $50 million as it plays into the Easter holiday weekend, a robust result for any independent film, let alone one explicitly geared toward a Christian audience.

Son of God, meanwhile, has pulled in $57.9 million over five weeks — while some have seen this as a disappointment given that the adaptation of the popular TV miniseries The Bible was initially released wide in 3,260 theaters, it is still an impressive figure considering how many ticket buyers likely had already seen at least part of the 10-hour History Channel series last year.

But this spike in interest still pales in comparison to the “golden era” of biblical epics in the 1950s, typified by astronomically popular movies like Cecil B. DeMille’s The Ten Commandments in 1956 and William Wyler’s Ben-Hur in 1959. By the 1960s, however, American moviegoing taste had softened on this kind of film, and they quickly fell out of favor in Hollywood.

The story of Moses leading the Israelites out of Egypt remains the highest grossing Bible-themed film ever — when adjusting for inflation, The Ten Commandments grossed over $1 billion in the U.S. alone. So it is perhaps only fitting that Hollywood’s next attempt at a biblical epic will be tackling this particular story once more: Ridley Scott’s Exodus: Gods and Kings, starring Christian Bale as Moses, is scheduled to open on Dec. 12.

*As of March 30, 2014. Box office data via and Adam B. Vary for BuzzFeed

Here are the estimated top 10 box office figures for Friday to Sunday, courtesy of Box Office Mojo:

1. Noah* — $44 million
2. Divergent — $26.5 million
3. Muppets Most Wanted — $11.4 million
4. Mr. Peabody & Sherman — $9.5 million
5. God’s Not Dead — $9.1 million
6. The Grand Budapest Hotel — $8.8 million
7. Sabotage* — $5.3 million
8. Need for Speed — $4.34 million
9. 300: Rise of an Empire — $4.3 million
10. Non-Stop — $4.1 million

*Opening weekend

TOPICS: Religion; Society; TV/Movies
KEYWORDS: bible; film; movies; noah

1 posted on 03/31/2014 9:21:41 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

I’d rather wait for Joe Bardwell’s version of Noah. God is not Dead is a good movie, in fact I suspect it must have been made in England or Canada or some place, it’s almost too good to have come from Hollywood.

2 posted on 03/31/2014 9:25:42 AM PDT by varmintman
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To: SeekAndFind

The Noah movie has nothing to do with the bible

3 posted on 03/31/2014 9:26:37 AM PDT by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans!)
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To: SeekAndFind

Noah is a piece of atheistic cr*p.

Let’s be honest about it. That won’t bother a lot of viewers. But I’m sick of all the lies, trying to such in naïve viewers to watch that filth.

Sure, it may be a good movie, in it’s way. But it’s pure greenie propaganda as well as an attack on the Judeo-Christian tradition.

Stop lying about it, you dirty reviewers.

4 posted on 03/31/2014 9:29:33 AM PDT by Cicero (Marcus Tullius)
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To: SeekAndFind
 photo NOAH2_zpse5c1b4a2.jpg
5 posted on 03/31/2014 9:37:22 AM PDT by baddog 219
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To: SeekAndFind

The movie - Noah - is not making the Bible popular at the movies, it’s basically DESTROYING the Bible.

This atheist, liberal, leftist, ‘green’, global warming and enviro-whacko director is PROMOTING his global warming agenda in host PROPAGANDA PIECE!

6 posted on 03/31/2014 9:37:24 AM PDT by Star Traveler (Remember to keep the Messiah of Israel in the One-World Government that we look forward to coming)
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To: SeekAndFind

A collection of FREEPER threads on the movie - Noah ...

Religious tide turns against ‘Noah’

Noah: a classic blunder

Nine problems with the movie “Noah”

Don’t Get Punked by Paramount’s Pagan Noah Film

Noah – The Emperor’s New Movie (The Utter Embarrassing Mess of ‘Noah’)

‘Noah’ Review: Brilliantly Sinister Anti-Christian Filmmaking

Noah, The Film: All Washed Up

Box Office: ‘Noah’ Winning Over Faith-Based and Mainstream Moviegoers

No meat at ‘Noah’ party

The Noah Movie: Our Detailed Review [Christian Review]

The Noah Movie: Deconstructing Noah’s Ark; Godawful Storytelling

Atheist ‘Noah’ director brags film is least biblical Bible movie ever

Moviegoers Are Thinking Things Over After Earthquake Hits During ‘Noah’

Ken Ham: The Unbiblical ‘Noah’ Is a Fable of a Film

Box Office: Moviegoers Flock to ‘Noah’… But Hate It

BOX OFFICE: ‘Noah’ Rises, ‘God’s Not Dead’ Surprises As Schwarzenegger Brought To Knees

Ray Comfort Releases Christian Noah Movie: Watch ‘Noah and the Last Day’ on YouTube for Free

The midrashiest midrash that ever was midrashed [a spoiler-free “Noah” review]

If Christians Are Going to Complain About The Movie Noah, Then Create Something Better

Noah is the Most Unpopular Movie in Current Release (Despite Topping the Box Office)

The Noah film is afloat with extremism

7 posted on 03/31/2014 9:39:30 AM PDT by Star Traveler (Remember to keep the Messiah of Israel in the One-World Government that we look forward to coming)
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To: SeekAndFind

The Noah movie is fantastic...if you’re a “green” hater of humanity and of Christianity.

8 posted on 03/31/2014 9:46:00 AM PDT by winner3000
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To: SeekAndFind

God Is Not Dead is a must see

9 posted on 03/31/2014 10:18:03 AM PDT by small business owner
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To: varmintman

I won’t go see Noah. Why give the creator of this nonsense any sense of credibility? God’s Not Dead was not exactly a Hollywood piece, according to what I read. It was produced by a small company that does pictures for people of faith, much like Fireproof and a couple others. Small company, small budget. Not Hollywood, because if Hollywood had ANYTHING to do with it, it would have been compromised in some way to fit their agenda.

God Is Not Dead really is unique in that it touches on real and current issues in Christianity today, not a story from the past. In fact, if anything, it brings to light the issue that we are in a spiritual battle DAILY and that the Enemy has been winning quite handily because MANY Christians are sitting on the sidelines, not engaged, unaware that we ARE in a spiritual battle, and obviously unprepared for this battle. A basic reason for this unpreparedness is this: the insistence by American scholars that the Pre-trib Rapture Theory is the Biblical one. It is the latest, from a dream of a nonbeliever who was considered demon-possessed. At the time it was propagated because of some part of that dream that appeared to come true. Then it was heralded by Scoffield, who included it into his notes in his notorious Scoffield Bible. Since then, it has been viewed as Scripture. This is insane.

If people really read their own Bibles and not commentary, they would understand that Jesus told of the signs that would precede His coming and they are playing out exactly as He said, and if you read Daniel, Ezekiel, and all the NT references, you will see that the NT scriptures actually give more detail (especially REV) to the OT prophecies, which were sealed until “that day”...and which we are seeing “unlocked” and revealed. The Pre-trib rapture makes people feel that they are safe from Antichrist and will not be here to know who he is. That is wrong. To believe that there will be a rapture, then a huge evangelistic outreach bringing millions of the left behind to Christ has no basis whatsoever in Scripture. One of the problems is that most American scholars do not differentiate between Antichrist’s fury and God’s wrath, which is the Trumpet and Bowl judgments. I could go on here, but I am needing to get back to my Kay Arthur study on Noah and the flood, as my class is tonight.

10 posted on 03/31/2014 10:21:34 AM PDT by Shery (in APO Land)
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To: SeekAndFind
THE BIBLE (1966)

11 posted on 03/31/2014 10:49:18 AM PDT by Ruy Dias de Bivar (Sometimes you need 7+ more ammo. LOTS MORE.)
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To: SeekAndFind

I want a movie produced using the real tribulation where God’s wrath is shown in its coming format and then Jesus returns to kill all His enemies bringing the peace on earth prophesied at His birth.

12 posted on 03/31/2014 12:25:51 PM PDT by huldah1776
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To: Shery

Two things I wasn't totally happy with about the movie:

One, Josh used the "big bang" idea as an argument against atheism/evolution. He might get away with it in a movie, real life is more problematical. Big Bang is more junk science just like evolution and should have been rejected on day one on purely philosophical grounds i.e. having all the mass of the universe collapsed to a point would be the mother of all black holes, and nothing would ever "bang" its way out of that. More recently, Halton Arp has destroyed the notion of an expanding universe and, with it, the entire rationale for believing in a "Big Bang".

The other thing I didn't like was claiming that free will was a total answer to the question of evil in the world. I believe that God does not directly interfere with physical reality because, were he to, the entire physical universe and the laws governing it would collapse. In other words, the first time he ever relaxed o0ne of the laws of nature for the sake of any individual person, there would never be an end to it.

I'd have preferred if Josh had spent a bit more time talking about evolution and less about the universe as a collection of hydrogen atoms. It's our living world which basically cannot be accounted for without God.

13 posted on 03/31/2014 12:27:01 PM PDT by varmintman
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To: varmintman

I’m on my way to see Gods Not Dead right now. Noah is playing at the same place. Planning to Grand Budapest Hotel on Wed.

14 posted on 03/31/2014 1:13:23 PM PDT by crazycatlady
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To: SeekAndFind

Russell Crowe with a crow on his head:

15 posted on 03/31/2014 4:58:10 PM PDT by drpmark
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To: baddog 219

America's Spiritual Revival and Healing - The Obstacle ...

.America's Spiritual Revival and Healing - The Obstacle ... - (click)

IRS & Church Marriage vs. "Render Unto Caesar" ...

IRS & Church Marriage vs. "Render Unto Caesar" - (click)

Who has the courage to watch this message ... Are today's Christians able to hear and recieve a challenging and difficult, albeit "true", look at why Jesus Christ commanded "Render Unto Caesar" message ?


16 posted on 03/31/2014 7:16:21 PM PDT by Patton@Bastogne (.)
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