Watch: An angel breaks the apostles out of prison in a new clip from next week’s episode of A.D. The Bible Continues

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One of several things that sets A.D. The Bible Continues apart from previous adaptations of the book of Acts is its depiction of the angels. While some films and TV shows have shied away from any sort of straightforward portrayal of the angels, A.D. puts them front and centre — and next week’s episode will be no different.

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A.D. The Bible Continues — season one, episode two

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Season 1, Episode 2 — ‘The Body Is Gone’
Matthew 28, Luke 24, John 20-21, Acts 1

Harmonization, redux. It’s pretty much impossible to harmonize the empty-tomb accounts in the four canonical gospels, and A.D. The Bible Continues doesn’t even try. It does, however, blend the various resurrection appearances that took place afterwards, as well as the final words of Jesus in Matthew and Acts.

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Cornelius and Caligula: biblical and secular history come together in two shows called A.D.

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One of the things I have always loved about the 1985 miniseries A.D.: Anno Domini is the way it links the conversion of Cornelius, a Roman centurion who became the first Gentile Christian, to Caligula’s efforts to have a statue of himself placed inside the Jerusalem temple. In this telling, Cornelius reacts to the insanity of Caligula’s decree by abandoning paganism altogether, while Peter and the other Christians argue over whether they, as Jews, should still regard the temple as “theirs” in some sense. Caligula’s plans to desecrate the temple, which we know about from writers such as Philo and Josephus, provoke a number of identity crises that are so interesting, you begin to wonder why the book of Acts itself never mentions this episode.

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The Bible sequel gets the green light — but what is it about?

Deadline reports that Mark Burnett and Roma Downey formally announced today that the sequel to The Bible will be a mini-series with the working title A.D.: Beyond the Bible. And instead of telling more stories from across the entire Bible, it sounds like the new series will focus exclusively on the period covered by the Book of Acts, with a heavy helping of secular history courtesy of historians like Josephus.

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It’s all connected: Gertrude Bell, Harry Potter and more!

Deadline reports that James Franco is “circling” a role in Werner Herzog’s long-in-development Gertrude Bell biopic Queen of the Desert. The role — which was once going to be played by Jude Law — is that of Henry Cadogan, a British diplomat who met Bell when she visited Persia, or modern-day Iran, in the 1890s. Bell herself will be played by Naomi Watts.

This bit of news reminds me that I never got around to blogging the last bit of casting news around this film, when it was announced last summer that Twilight star Robert Pattinson is attached to play T.E. Lawrence, a.k.a. “Lawrence of Arabia”. I found that news kind of amusing because Pattinson has already co-starred with another actor who once played Lawrence.

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The Bible: final episode, first impressions

And so it ends. Here are my first impressions of the final episode of The Bible, which aired last night.

Continuity between Bible stories, redux. Once again, I am impressed by the fact that this adaptation-of-the-whole-Bible approach — whatever its limitations — has allowed the filmmakers to emphasize the continuity between Bible stories in a way that you rarely see in other films.

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