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Martin Scorsese To Make Film About Jesus

Jesus has arguably never been more popular at the movie theaters. With the success of The Chosen, an impending Bible Cinematic Universe, and films like Jesus Revolution, religious storytelling is blossoming in Hollywood. Now, even Martin Scorsese—one of the most accomplished directors of all time—is looking to Jesus for inspiration.

Scorsese, who has long been drawn to spiritual and religious themes in his films, recently had a private conference with Pope Francis in the Vatican. In answer to the Pope’s challenge to “let us see Jesus,” Scorsese announced, “I have responded to the Pope’s appeal to artists in the only way I know how: by imagining and writing a screenplay for a film about Jesus . . . And I’m about to start making it.”

Of course, Scorsese is no stranger to religious themes or stories about Jesus. His controversial 1988 film, The Last Temptation of Christ, sparked significant outrage and boycotts. While he later explained that his motivations were to spark discussions on wider spiritual themes rather than to blaspheme, the movie has remained divisive. On the other hand, his 2016 film Silence, which depicts the persecution of Jesuit priests, was more warmly received and is frequently included near the top of lists ranking the best religious-themed movies.  

The announcement of the Jesus movie comes at an interesting time in Scorsese’s career. At 80 years old, he understands that his remaining time to tell meaningful stories is limited. In a recent interview with Deadline he said, “I’m old. I read stuff. I see things. I want to tell stories, and there’s no more time.” As his career winds down, it appears that one of Hollywood’s more spiritually minded directors is returning his attention to the religious themes that resonate with him.

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