For immediate release
Press contact: Grace Hill Media / 818-762-0000
Joahnna Cruz / email@example.com
Dawnchelle Carlton / firstname.lastname@example.org
MORE THAN 50 MILLION PEOPLE HAVE SEEN ‘THE BIBLE’ TO DATE
EPIC MINISERIES NOW WELCOMES JESUS AS FOCUS SHIFTS TO NEW TESTAMENT
All-new episodes air Sunday 8/7c on HISTORY
Los Angeles, Calif. (March 15, 2013) – More than 50 million people in the U.S. and Canada have watched the first two installments of the epic miniseries THE BIBLE – and the excitement continues to build for TV’s hottest show with this Sunday’s arrival of Jesus and the stories of the New Testament.
Adding the ratings of repeat airings to the series’ Sunday night premieres on HISTORY, the overall numbers certainly justify the terms like “blockbuster” and “a hit of biblical proportions” the media have used to describe the 10-hour, five-part dramatization of stories from Scripture.
And the best-known of those stories, featuring the most-beloved figure in the Bible, don’t even begin airing until this week.
“Jesus is coming!” co-executive producer Roma Downey said. ““He’s the ‘leading man’ of the Bible’s grand story of God’s love for us, and he makes his entrance this week.
“It’s been a wondrous journey through the tales of God’s faithfulness to His people in the Old Testament – and we’ve got some more of that this week in our first hour, including the story of Daniel, she added. “And then it’s on to the birth, ministry, teachings, betrayal, death, resurrection and ascension of Christ for the next three weeks.”
Mark Burnett, Downey’s husband and co-executive producer, said viewers will be treated to the same kind of spectacle they’ve enjoyed thus far as THE BIBLE shifts its focus to New Testament stories.
“Jesus walking on water, feeding the 5,000, healing the leper, casting out demons and the painful power of the Crucifixion are all moments we’ve sought to bring to life with reverence and fresh visual impact,” he said. “At the same time, as evocative as we tried to make the entire series, there’s an added, deeper emotional connection in the life of Jesus, and we hope we we’ve been able to transfer that from Scripture to screen.”
The portrayal of Jesus by Portuguese actor Diogo Morgado is both tough and tender, Downey explained – exactly as Jesus is depicted in the Bible.
“Diogo is both the Lion and the Lamb, strong when it’s called for and sensitive when it’s called for,” she said. “I really can’t think of any other actor who’s brought such a commanding yet compassionate presence to the part.”
As for the series’ record ratings, Burnett said it’s further evidence that audiences are hungry for family-friendly entertainment.
“Our goal as makers of television shows is to produce quality programs families can enjoy together,” said the producer of hits like SURVIVOR, THE VOICE, THE APPRENTICE and SHARK TANK. “We’ve said all along THE BIBLE has been a passion project for us – and that’s one of the reasons why: Parents and children can share the experience of these incredible stories coming to life before their eyes.”
About Roma Downey
A celebrated, Emmy-nominated actress Roma Downey is best known for her nine seasons as the tender-hearted angel on the hit CBS show Touched by an Angel. Roma starred in over 200 episodes and her work as the compassionate angel inspired millions of people around the world and earned Roma multiple best actress nominations for Emmy’s and Golden Globe awards. Born in Ireland and classically trained in London, Ms. Downey has performed on stage with the famed Abbey Theatre Company and has appeared both on and off Broadway. She played the leading role of Jackie Kennedy Onassis in the Emmy award winning six hour miniseries for NBC called “A Woman Named Jackie." Ms. Downey not only starred in, but executive produced seven television movies for The CBS network, among them "Borrowed Hearts" with Eric Mc Cormack and "Second Honeymoon" with Tim Matheson. She is the executive producer of the children's DVD and book series "Little Angels" and its companion "Little Angels Storybook Bible". Downey is currently producing a ten hour miniseries, The Bible with her husband, Mark Burnett. This is being produced under their company LightWorkers Media and is the first collaboration of this husband and wife team. Ms. Downey not only produced the series but stepped into the role of Mary the Mother of Christ. Ms. Downey and Mr. Burnett have co-authored a companion book to the series ‘A Story of God and all of Us.’ The book is to be published this Spring by Faith Words. For many years Ms Downey has been a spokesperson for "Operation Smile" a volunteer organization that brings free surgeries to children around the globe with facial deformities. She has travelled to third world and developing countries making fund raising films on their behalf.
About Mark Burnett
Four-time Emmy Award winner Mark Burnett has produced over 1,200 hours of television programming which regularly airs in over 70 countries worldwide. His current network series include "Survivor" (CBS), "The Voice" (NBC), "The Celebrity Apprentice" (NBC), and “Shark Tank” (ABC). In last 12 months Burnett series have won their time slots on 5 nights of television in the same week. Burnett is one of very few producers to have had a renewed series on each of the four major networks. He also has a strong presence in award show franchises, having produced the "MTV Movie Awards" from 2007 to 2011, the annual “People’s Choice Awards” since 2010, the "Video Game Awards" (Spike) and the 2011"Primetime Emmy Awards." Burnett is currently producing and distributing ten hour miniseries on The Bible (with his wife Roma Downey - Star of Touched by an Angel) for air globally in Spring 2013. Mr. Burnett has been named one of the world's most influential people by TIME Magazine and also listed as TV Guide’s most valuable player. He has won BRANDWEEK’S Marketer of the Year Award, The Brandon Tartikoff Legacy Award, the PGA Norman Lear Award and the prestigious ROSE D’OR FRAPA Format Award. Burnett was inducted into the Broadcasting and Cable Hall of Fame and was honored in 2010 with a star on Hollywood's Walk of Fame. He served two elected terms on the Board of Directors for the British Academy of Film and Television Arts in Los Angeles.
HISTORY® is the leading destination for factual entertainment, including award-winning original series and specials that connect viewers with history in an informative, immersive and entertaining manner across multiple platforms. The network’s all-original programming slate, including scripted event programming, features a roster of hits including American Pickers®, American Restoration™, Ax Men™, Ice Road Truckers®, Pawn Stars®, Swamp People® and Top Shot® as well as epic mini-series and specials such as the Emmy® Award-winning Hatfields & McCoys, Gettysburg, Vietnam in HD, America The Story of Us, and 102 Minutes That Changed America. The HISTORY website is the leading online resource for all things history, and in 2011, the United States Library of Congress selected HISTORY’s Civil War 150 site for inclusion in the historic collection of Internet materials related to the American Civil War sesquicentennial. www.history.com