Analyzing new perspectives of Christ through ‘The Chosen’

By Katharine Menning

The Chosen stars actor Jonathan Roumie as Jesus (photo courtesy of @InsideTheChosen on Facebook).

“Behold, I am doing a new thing” (Isaiah 43:19) is how many fans and the creator, director and University of Northwestern–St. Paul alumni, Dallas Jenkins, would describe the ground-breaking show, The Chosen.

The Chosen is the first multi-season show about the life of Jesus Christ “through the eyes of those who met him.” This is different from other projects about Jesus, which tell the story of Jesus from his perspective. In The Chosen, viewers get to see Jesus from the perspective of the disciples and the people he interacted with.

The Chosen gives backstories to people that the Bible does not describe in depth. Peter had a wife and a brother, Andrew, but what did life at home look like for them? The Gospels say Matthew was a tax collector, but was it possible that he might have been acquainted with Peter and Andrew since they lived in the same town? Jesus healed Mary Magdalene from seven demons, but what brought her to that place in her life? 

All these speculations and possibilities are explored in The Chosen, with more to come in future seasons. These possible backstories give a glimpse into the lives of the people who followed Jesus and make them feel more relatable and real.

Another thing that makes The Chosen different is that it is a multi-season project. Instead of having about two hours or a few episodes to portray the life and ministry of Jesus, there will be about seven seasons. These seasons will allow for an in-depth look at Jesus’ ministry and life, along with the lives of those around him. The show can take its time exploring the relationships, teachings and miracles of Jesus instead of briefly going over them.

The Chosen also portrays Jesus in a different way than other films. Many films show Jesus as quiet and stoic, with a pious, holy and serious air. Some portrayals of Jesus do not even show him smiling or laughing. 

Jesus in The Chosen is different. In this show, more of Jesus’ humanity is portrayed, while still acknowledging that he is holy and is the Son of God. Jesus is shown doing ordinary human things like working, making food, joking and laughing, which are many of the things people do every day. This Jesus feels more real, more relatable.

The Chosen is completely supported and made possible by the fans. It is a highly successful crowd-funded project at $10 million from over 19,000 people. The only way the show gets made is by people investing money in the show. This is done through buying merch and paying it forward, which allows others to watch episodes for free. Making a show this way also allows for the fans to be part of the show’s creation process. Some lucky investors even get a chance to visit the set and maybe be a background extra in an episode.

Season One is complete and available to watch for free on any app store by downloading The Chosen app. It allows people to watch the episodes whenever and wherever. Season Two is currently being filmed and will hopefully be released by Easter 2021.

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