Idol Chatter

The upcoming film “Risen”  is the story of Roman military officer Clavius and his personal mission to debunk the disciples’ claims that Christ was resurrected. Joseph Fiennes stars as the skeptic non-believer who works the case. Clavius, like many of his men, worshiped a Roman god–he must prove to the Empire that Jesus was flesh and blood.

How was Fiennes able to transition into Clavius?

“The hardest part for me was wearing sandals for three and half months,” he laughed. “The hardest thing is negotiating a non-believer and also a military tribune steeped in warfare. A brutal man in many respects, we see him as part of the death squad that crucifies Jesus. I had to work hard in introducing something likable, someone you want to go on this journey with,” he said.

If Fiennes can keep the audience with him, they will see a man’s life changed forever by what he witnessed in the Upper Room that begins his journey as a believer.

What makes this project unique?

The film kicks off chronologically with the crucifixion, the resurrection, and the ascension. Fiennes stated, “Visiting those elements through the eyes of an unbeliever is really unique and that’s what I think sets us apart.”

The project has been a lengthy 10-year journey to theatrical release for director Kevin Reynolds (Hatfields & McCoys.) He worked to get the story to a place that is satisfactory from a creative level and a Scripture level. “It’s always striking that balance,” Fiennes offered.

“I think getting that character, a non-believer, and carrying that through a narrative that we know so well was no easy task by all accounts,” he said. “It’s been positively received by ministers and the faith-based community. I’m really happy about that.”

Watch the New Testament period film “Risen” starring Joseph Fiennes opening on Feb. 19.


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