Several Israeli actors join the cast of Mary Magdalene

Several Israeli actors join the cast of Mary Magdalene September 13, 2016

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The Hollywood Reporter says Israeli actress Hadas Yaron has joined the cast of Mary Magdalene as the title character’s sister-in-law Sarah. The film’s previously announced co-stars include Rooney Mara as Mary Magdalene, Joaquin Phoenix as Jesus, Chiwetel Ejiofor as Peter and Tahar Rahim as Judas Iscariot.

It was reported last month that the film, which starts shooting next month, will show Mary Magdalene “leav[ing] her small fishing village and family behind” to join the Jesus movement. Presumably Sarah is part of the family that gets left behind — unless she ends up becoming one of the other women who traveled with the disciples?

For what it’s worth, the New Testament doesn’t say anything about Mary Magdalene’s family, and the only Sarah mentioned in the New Testament is Abraham’s wife.

Yaron may be best-known for playing Hasidic women in the Israeli film Fill the Void (2012) and the Canadian film Félix & Meira (2014, pictured above).

Yaron isn’t the only Israeli actor who has joined the cast of Mary Magdalene. The film’s IMDb page lists several others as well, including Michael Moshonov (Matthew), Uri Gavriel (Philip), Zohar Shtrauss (John), Tawfeek Barhom (James) and Shira Haas as someone named Leah (there is no one named Leah in the New Testament).

Other Israeli actors who have appeared in recent and upcoming Jesus movies include Ayelet Zurer (Last Days in the Desert, Ben-Hur) and Aviv Alush (The Shack).

Mary Magdalene is based on a script by Helen Edmundson (An Inspector Calls) and Philippa Goslett (Little Ashes) and is being directed by Garth Davis, whose debut feature Lion is playing this week at the Toronto International Film Festival.

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