By Michelle Albert
Though lately religion has seemed a passing fad in Hollywood, a group of celebrities are taking spirituality seriously. An audio version of the Bible – Old and New Testaments – is slated for release October 2009 from Falcon Picture Group. What makes this version different from all other versions is that it is read and voiced entirely by celebrities. Richard Dreyfuss plays Moses, Marisa Tomei is Mary Magdalene, Luke Perry voices Judas and Jim Caviezel, of The Passion of the Christ fame, reprises his role as Jesus. Hollywood stars playing biblical stars – the star power is blinding.
Falcon’s version, titled The Word of Promise, arrives on the heels of another celebrity-voiced version of the bible, Inspired By… The Bible Experience, released in 2007. Inspired By… features an all-black cast, including Samuel L. Jackson as God, Denzel Washington as Solomon and Cuba Gooding Jr. as Judas. The set is 89 hours long, making Inspired By… quite the religious experience. The Word of Promise New Testament, already available to the public, tops off at 22 hours. The length of the complete version should be nothing less than biblical.
Though it is slightly disappointing that Morgan Freeman does not make an appearance as God (especially after a triumphant turn as He in Bruce Almighty), the casts of Inspired By… and The Word of Promise are excellent. The stars have come out to celebrate the world’s oldest story, and the result looks to be one for the ages.