Risen gets a website with over a dozen new images — and is it the first film to get a PG-13 rating for “biblical violence”?


The powers that be behind Risen — the upcoming film that stars Joseph Fiennes and Tom Felton as Roman officers who go looking for the body of Jesus — have unveiled an official website for the film that has some new photos as well as a timeline that charts some of the key events between the Crucifixion and the Ascension.

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Noah news round-up: novelizations, ratings, and more

Let’s keep this one brief.

The big Noah news today, of course, is that three books based on the film are now available for purchase: a regular novelization of the movie, a junior novelization that focuses on Noah’s daughter-in-law Ila, and a graphic novel that is based on an early draft of the script and is thus somewhat different from the movie.

If you can’t wait for the movie to learn all its spoilers, or if you want to study how the script evolved from the version that produced the graphic novel to the version that produced the novelizations, well, you’ve now got plenty of reading material to work with!

To help you get started, MTV has posted an excerpt from the junior novelization, Ila’s Story, which introduces the character as a wounded and orphaned little girl; it also introduces those fallen angels known as the Watchers. No pictures, alas.

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Noah news round-up: snubs from church leaders, props from Christians who have seen the film, and more

The European promo tour for Darren Aronofsky’s Noah soldiers on. Following the film’s Berlin premiere on Thursday, the filmmakers went to Madrid for another premiere tonight, while Russell Crowe attended his first Noah premiere at the other end of Europe, in Moscow; he had missed the previous events because he was shooting a movie in Turkey.

Alas, the European tour has already encountered one hiccup of sorts: Variety reported today that the Vatican has cancelled tentative plans for a photo op that would have featured Pope Francis and a few of the filmmakers, including Crowe and Aronofsky.

Crowe, via Twitter, had been openly asking the Pope to screen the film for a few weeks now, and the Vatican reportedly gave the idea enough consideration to set some time aside for a meeting on Wednesday; but they eventually decided against it because Crowe’s presence would be too distracting to the Vatican’s other visitors.

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Drugs, violence, Christian themes and the R rating

Seven years ago, there was a lot of sound and fury over the fact that a low-budget movie made by a church had received a PG rating, rather than a G rating.

Despite the fact that the PG rating is routinely handed out to animated movies, Billy Graham movies and other movies that are aimed at family audiences, there were cries of persecution on the new film’s behalf, and the film itself — which had been produced for a mere half a million bucks — rode the wave of publicity to a box-office gross of over $10 million.

Now a Baptist pastor in Texas seems keen to drum up the same sort of publicity — and this time, it is because the movie produced by his church was rated R for violence and drug use.

Chuck Kitchens, pastor at Retta Baptist Church in Burleson, told Fox News that My Son, the movie produced by his church, is less violent than World War Z and has less drug usage than Jobs, both of which were rated PG-13, and he believes My Son was given an R rating because of its Christian message:
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Much ado about movie ratings / Ratings now flag religious and political agendas

Facing the Giants, a low-budget movie about a high-school football team, was recently rated PG for parental guidance in the U.S. The film’s Christian producers and the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), which hands out movie ratings south of the border, agree the film should be rated PG. But they don’t agree on why the film was rated PG — thus launching one of the latest and silliest skirmishes in the culture wars.

Kris Fuhr, vice-president of marketing for Provident Films, told one reporter she had expected the film to be rated PG because the story dealt with mature subject matter, such as infertility. But when she asked the MPAA why the film got that rating in the end, the person she spoke to reportedly referred to the film’s evangelistic content.

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