The Plot of God’s Not Dead 2

They’re filming God’s Not Dead 2 (sadly not named Electric Boogaloo) in Little Rock, Arkansas and Hemant reports on the plot of the sequel. It predictably features a bunch of has-been celebrities in a plot about horrible and non-existent persecution of Christians.

God’s Not Dead featured actor Kevin Sorbo as a college professor who demanded that his students admit God doesn’t exist. (Something that never actually happens in real life.)

The sequel is currently being filmed in Little Rock, Arkansas, and it looks like the producers are following the same playbook as before.

This time, Melissa Joan Hart (best known for playing the title characters in Sabrina the Teenage Witch and Clarissa Explains It All) stars as a high school teacher who quotes the Bible in class and gets sued by a student (Hayley Orrantia of The Goldbergs) who believes in this silly idea called “separation of church and state.”

There’s even a big trial…

I can’t wait to hear Melissa Joan Hart yell “You can’t handle God’s truth!” in the climactic scene. Why is it that Christian movies always seem to star these washed-up has-beens from ages past, never an actual current star? I mean, Hart and Kevin Sorbo and, in several such films, Erik freaking Estrada, for crying out loud. What, Danny Bonaduce was too busy? Couldn’t find a phone number for Justine Bateman or the girl who played Mindy on the Facts of Life?

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  • raven

    Why is it that Christian movies always seem to star these washed-up has-beens from ages past, never an actual current star?

    Good question.

    I’m assuming it has to do with….money? Even nobodies and washed up has beens need to eat and pay bills.

  • http://zenoferox.blogspot.com/ Zeno

    Kevin Sorbo’s character got killed in a hit-and-run at the end of God’s Not Dead [I hope I didn’t spoil that for anyone]. Too bad they missed an opportunity to resurrect him in God’s Not Dead 2. It would be a cool miracle! Almost as amazing as resurrecting his career.

  • colnago80

    Probably because no A list (or even B list) actors would be caught dead in such movies.

  • Morgan

    Why is it that Christian movies always seem to star these washed-up has-beens from ages past

    I’m pretty sure it’s specifically and deliberately to trample the vaguely fond memories some of us have of whatever they used to be in. I mean, Hercules! Sabrina! I didn’t expect them to win any Oscars any time soon, but were it not for these movies I could have persisted in the comforting assumption that they were better people than this. It’s very disappointing. I’d call it evidence that god is dead.

  • raven

    Hmmm, I’m seeing a huge opportunity here.

    It’s a free country. Meaning Nones, Pagans, Atheists, and Normal People can all make propaganda movies too.

    The trial and burning at the stake of Bruno Giordano, a Dominican monk, for among other things claiming the earth goes around the sun. I think Joan of Arc has been done, also burned at the stake for claiming to hear from god and waving a sword around. Galileo. Tynsdale, the first English tranlator of the bible, burned at the stake.

    The witch hunts and Inquisition. Albigensian genocide, 100% kill rate (ever seen an Albigensian?) and around 1 million massacred, many of them women and children.

    The Mountain Meadows massacre where the Mormons killed over 100 civilians as part of their failed Utah Secession war.

    The crusade where the Catholics sacked Constantinople, showing the Orthodox who are the Real Xians. The Reformation wars which the RCC lost. Saint Thomas More, serial killer of Protestants.

    So many xian atrocities. So little time. This list could be way longer and include the current batch of vaguely humanoid toad leaders and their gay hate campaign.

    Then romcom and sitcoms. Marriages split apart when one partner leaves their fundie cult. Children growing up and discovering they’ve been lied to. Fundie children who survive horrific abuse (common in real life). Etc.

    Sure, the xians would scream loud and long. That is a feature not a bug. It’s free advertising. The real question is will they make enough money to pay for themselves. God Doesn’t Exist Productions could start a kickstarter account. And Freethoughtblogs Productions could recruit some of the creative talent of the Nones.

    Pagans already have a foothold. Thor has been evolving and growing and is now a popular comic book character and movie star.

    PS This has already been done on a minor scale. Jesus Camp was a documentary of some influence.

  • dmcclean

    Part Duh.

  • http://timgueguen.blogspot.com timgueguen

    I think Ed got Mindy Cohn confused with the character she played on The Facts of Life, Natalie. In any case I doubt we’ll see her in a bad Christian film anytime soon. She’s working a lot, most notably having been the voice of Velma in various Scooby Doo productions for more than a decade. I wouldn’t be surprised if she’s making more money than Kevin Sorbo is.

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    colnago80 “Probably because no A list (or even B list) actors would be caught dead in such movies.”

    Nicolas Cage. [drops mic]

  • thebookofdave

    What to you mean, “washed-up has-beens? C’mon, Ed! Everybody knows Christians don’t stand a chance in the stage and acting business. Once real actors reveal themselves as true witnesses to the faith, the left liberal media instantly moves to crush their careers. Only True Flix Entertainment has the courage to stand up to the Elite Hollywood Establishment.

    Mark my words: the footage for God’s Not Dead 3 will be shot from hidden cameras behind the scenes of one of these atheistic propaganda hit-pieces. Then you’re going to see how Christian persecution works in real life!

  • Pierce R. Butler

    colnago80 @ # 3: Probably because no A list (or even B list) actors would be caught dead in such movies.

    The producers of Noah <a href="approximately tripled their investment, so we have a good chance of seeing Russell Crowe, Anthony Hopkins, & Emma Watson on the screen again.

    And maybe even some more stories from that same scary book: how ’bout the exciting & edifying saga of Gibeah?

  • Morgan

    I wouldn’t describe Noah as a “Christian movie”, certainly not of the God’s Not Dead genre.

  • Pierce R. Butler

    Oops, my total html fail @ # 10: The producers of Noah approximately tripled their investment

  • http://twitter.com/#!/TabbyLavalamp Tabby Lavalamp

    I’m surprised they hired Melissa Joan Hart. Sabrina never denounced her witchcraft nor was she burned at the stake.

  • colnago80

    Re Pierce R. Butler @ #12

    Since Noah got a poor 5.9 at IMDB and a 42% score at Rotten Tomatoes from the general audience (it got a 77% score from the critics, which says a lot about the critics, none of it flattering), maybe Crowe and Hopkins are no longer A list actors.

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    colnago80 “…maybe Crowe and Hopkins are no longer A list actors.”

    If true, Crowe & Hopkins would make a kick-ass country band. Or a British pub.

  • Pierce R. Butler

    Morgan @ # 11: I wouldn’t describe Noah as a “Christian movie”, certainly not of the God’s Not Dead genre.

    I agree, sorta: the latter concern modern characters, have low budgets and production values, and don’t use CGI.

    Most of the action-packed material available to Hollywood from the Holy Scriptures® comes from the Hebrew Testament, which the Christians stole appropriated ~19 centuries ago: though aimed at the same core audience (I think), that sort of flick constitutes a different sub-genre.

    And we have the in-betweens, contemporary characters in mythical fantasy settings acting out xianist morality stories: e.g., look for another Narnia movie (The Silver Chair) next year.

  • Morgan

    Pierce R. Butler @16:

    though aimed at the same core audience (I think)

    That’s what I’m disagreeing with. By the accounts I’ve seen, Noah was a deeply weird movie which reveled in the strangeness of the extrabiblical sources it drew on. It wasn’t, to my knowledge, aimed at Christians who were expected to see it because it was “Christian”, any more than Immortals was aimed at Olympian neopagans.

    That is – there does exist a genre of crappy Christian video games; Bayonetta and Dante’s Inferno do not belong to it (at least not the Christian part).

  • Loqi

    That it has a crappy plot is actually surprising to me. I didn’t expect it would have a plot at all.

  • Knight in Sour Armor

    Melissa Joan Hart doing this? Really? Didn’t know she’d gone all Kirk Cameron…

  • dingojack

    If god’s not dead, what does he need a plot for?

    It’s OK – I’ll throw myself out.

    Dingo

  • http://timgueguen.blogspot.com timgueguen

    Don’t assume an actor has gone full blown fundie just because they appear in a Christian movie. Michael York appeared in the Omega Code movies, then appeared in the third Austin Powers movie and other secular films. So I’d bet he did those Omega Code movies as much for the money as anything else

  • kyoseki

    Nicholas Cage only appeared in Left Behind because he’s so in debt he’d do Arby’s commercials if they paid well.

    One thing I’m curious about. Arkansas has a film subsidy of 20-30%, so AR taxpayers cover 20-30% of the total cost of making a movie. (Left Behind claimed Louisiana’s 30-35% subsidy for filming there). For overt religious propaganda of this sort, wouldn’t this constitute government sponsorship of religion? Or would that only apply if a particular religion was denied the same subsidies?

  • bryanfeir

    If true, Crowe & Hopkins would make a kick-ass country band. Or a British pub.

    Crowe has already been part of at least two different bands, Thirty Odd Foot Of Grunts and The Ordinary Fear Of God, and has done a lot of musical collaboration with Alan Doyle of Great Big Sea here in Canada. (Which is part of why Alan Doyle got cast as Allan A’Dayle in the Robin Hood movie Crowe was in.)

    No idea about Hopkins.

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    bryanfeir, my fictional band kicks way more ass than any band Crowe could actually be in.

  • David Eriksen

    This news makes me sad. Twenty-odd years ago, I wanted to be the neighbor boy climbing up to Clarissa’s window. Sure, I was only 12 at the time but she was the coolest. She was the only fictional character that I ever had a crush on.

  • had3

    Morgan@11, is that a form of a no true Scotsman film?

  • Kilian Hekhuis

    “Why is it that Christian movies always seem to star these washed-up has-beens from ages past, never an actual current star?” – I wonder why you need to put down actors for doing their job – acting – if they feature in a Christian movie? As raven said in the first comment, they gotta feed themselves and their family. Or do you think that the average actor actually stands behind the content of films they play in?

  • http://dWhisper.net dWhisper

    @19 She’s had a pretty long history of Right-Wing and Conservative stuff under her belt, as well as basically existing in a not-all-that-narrow niche of “Has-Been rip-offs” and “Lifetime Movies.”

    I didn’t realize that Estrada was trying to remain relevant by going all “Christian outsider”. His presence does give me a slight hope that we can just dub over this whole affair with Sealab 2021 dialog and produce perhaps the greatest bootleg movie ever…

  • throwaway, butcher of tongues, mauler of metaphor

    Kilian Hekhuis says

    “Why is it that Christian movies always seem to star these washed-up has-beens from ages past, never an actual current star?” – I wonder why you need to put down actors for doing their job – acting – if they feature in a Christian movie? As raven said in the first comment, they gotta feed themselves and their family. Or do you think that the average actor actually stands behind the content of films they play in?

    Except, when you get down to it, they actually *do* agree with the messages behind the images they’re portraying. Sorbo has said some incredibly stupid shit before. So has MJH, who “came out” as a Republican in Hollywood on twitter.

    Sorry, I can’t hear you over how vague and non-specific your protests were. Care to cite some examples of famous actors stating “I’m just doing it for the paycheck” with regard to these movies?

  • raven

    Or do you think that the average actor actually stands behind the content of films they play in?

    People with integrity do.

    1. We all need money to eat and pay bills. But most of us have moral reservations about doing some things for it.

    2. To take one example, I wouldn’t star in a xian propaganda film insulting atheists and normal people even for a large pay check***. I wouldn’t pretend to be a prophet and babble out a lot of hate and lies for money like virtually every single xian leader. Glenn Beck makes more money in a year than most people make in a lifetime while making dozens of prophecies, all of which have never come true.

    3. I try to walk my talk and live my values as an atheistic Pagan. Just because I want to look in the mirror in the morning and feel like a worthwhile human being.

    None of you need to know or care one bit what that means. But among other things I donate to Planned Parenthood and will never set foot in a Chick-fil-a or Hobby Lobby store.

    PS Kilian Hekhuis, you aren’t a xian are you? You have that amoral clueslessness that many of them have. Xianity isn’t a source of morality, the fundie perversion owns the Dark Side of our society.

    PPS*** All of you managed to miss the point of #5. Look, the screenplays are almost all written. They are great. Call your agent and let’s do lunch. One of them is the heart warming story of a medical researcher and their cats who escape a horrible xian cult and find meaning in opposing the Dark Side of US religion and helping others escape toxic xianity. (It’s not totally autobiographical.)

  • Kilian Hekhuis

    throwaway #29: In that case scold them for being boneheads, but *don’t* accuse them of being “has beens”, which is cheap name calling.

    raven #30: I’m an atheist. I take offense for you accusing me of “amoral cluelessness”, but whatever.

  • dogmeat

    One thing I’m curious about. Arkansas has a film subsidy of 20-30%, so AR taxpayers cover 20-30% of the total cost of making a movie. (Left Behind claimed Louisiana’s 30-35% subsidy for filming there). For overt religious propaganda of this sort, wouldn’t this constitute government sponsorship of religion? Or would that only apply if a particular religion was denied the same subsidies?

    Unless you can show that they were only giving this subsidy to religious themes movies, no. If a government entity provides a benefit, in this case a subsidy, it has to be neutral regarding the point of view expressed in that activity. As long as they’re providing the same subsidy, using the same criteria they’re okay. In fact they’d be in trouble if they specifically refused to provide the same subsidy if they did so because it was religious themed.