Selling a home of 8 years and giving everything to pursue an endeavor (especially when there is no guarantee of reaching full funding) certainly reveals much about a one’s commitment and motives. Darin and his wife, Michelle, are in this together as well as the many who have lent their talents to the project thus far. The producers are committed to making nothing less than a worldwide blockbuster film based on the 4th “Most Influential Book in America”. Our motives are simple: Flood the earth with the coolest (action-packed and inspirational) stories the world has ever seen, as taken from the Book of Mormon.
Absolutely! If you are a freedom-loving patriot of liberty, you will support making this movie. It’d be the “Christian” thing to do ;).
Of course, as Christians, we read many books about Christ that are not the Bible. C.S. Lewis’ “Mere Christianity”, Sarah Young’s “Jesus Calling”, or Max Lucado’s “Fearless”, for example, are excellent Christian choices. But these books may be (and often are) written by pastors from Church denominations other than your own. Does this mean you up and change your Church just because you read a book from a different denomination? Of course not.
Most people have no idea; there are 3,925 references to Jesus Christ in The Book of Mormon (that’s once every 1.7 verses). It is one of the most Christ-soaked books on the planet. This is why the book affirms itself as “Another Testament of Jesus Christ”. But here’s the thing, if you’re not Mormon, the book is just another book about Jesus. Whether in a different religion or in no religion at all, you should still support this epic film. Reign of Judges: Title of Liberty is really just an action-packed entertaining story about the blood cost price of LIBERTY that is soaked in the Spirit of Freedom. A period action film that follows a people who fled Jerusalem to declare independence from from the oppressive king Zedekiah.
These are themes ALL people can relate to and find common ground with. If you want to know something really interesting, the man our story centers around, Captain Moroni, actually coined the phrase “Christian” in 73 BC—think of it, they had such faith in Christ they took upon themselves His name, even before He became flesh on earth. “And thus (Moroni) was preparing to support their liberty, their lands, their wives, and their children, and their peace, and that they might live unto the Lord their God, and that they might maintain that which was called by their enemies the cause of Christians. And therefore, at this time, Moroni prayed that the cause of the Christians, and the freedom of the land might be favored.”
Please, especially if you are Christian, give a pledge that represents your love of liberty, peace, and freedom that Christ affords His children. You won’t regret it!
We appreciate the concern expressed with this question and realize it is a sensitive matter. First, we have to be honest with ourselves about the book this film is based on and what the historian General, Mormon, chose to put in it.
As with Passion of The Christ, for example, portrayed authentically sometimes means an “R” rating. The realities of warfare and fighting for freedom actually make up the majority of the Book of Mormon, juxtaposed to the fact there are also nearly 4,000 mentions of Christ throughout the record. Obviously, the historian General Mormon saw great parallels in their warfare with following (or not following) God and this is why he chose to include them in such raw detail
It has long been said by many, if an authentic movie was made about the Book of Mormon it would have to be rated “R” and this is the truth if it truly showed what is written, particularly about the brutality of warfare. However, there is a choice in filmmaking to focus on gore rather than on the reasons for the conflict. We are choosing the latter.
The warfare in Reign of Judges: Title of Liberty will be real and authentic-- nothing will be watered down, but it will not be distractingly gory. The focus will remain on the struggle of good vs evil, freedom or captivity. We are aiming for a “PG-13” rating in the USA.
My goodness, YES. The filmmaking business, as with any business, is all about how many people we can employ who will lend their talents to the project and distribute (delegate) the intense load of production. If too few people are doing too many things, detail is lost. It is no stretch that Darin and his wife, Michelle, have personally invested more time and money into this project than is represented by our minimum goal.
Moroni’s armor alone costs more than some people make in a year. The armor for an army is extremely costly, the visual effects are extremely costly, the costumes, actors, food, transportation, room and board, etc. It is a massive (miraculous) coordination of effort to make a movie and only those who have done it know how hard it is to do right.
JJ Abrams was completely spent after The Force Awakens. Peter Jackson nearly disappeared with all the weight he lost filming the Lord of The Rings. Filmmaking is tough. But the more funds are available the more the load is eased and the better the resulting product. It’s also a lot more FUN to make movie magic when we have magical resources to make that magic!
Not officially. They obviously know about our project and have not objected to what we are doing. The creator of the film, Darin Southam, has appeared in at least 7 official Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon) productions. He has also produced 2 “Mormon Messages” (as an independently contracted production company) for the Official Mormon Church campaign.
Darin’s first “Mormon Message,” Saving Your Marriage, was the fasted-approved message in the history of the campaign at the time it was delivered, being approved by all authorities in less than 48 hours. Darin is well familiar with Mormon Church production processes, talent, and workflows and is quite certain (though it cannot be official) that the leaders of the Mormon Church are enthusiastically supportive of what he is doing.
Indeed, Mormon Church Doctrine states “Verily I say, men should be anxiously engaged in a good cause, and do many things of their own free will, and bring to pass much righteousness (D&C 58:27).” One definition of the word anxious means “Wanting something very much, typically with a feeling of unease.” Darin has wanted this story portrayed in worldwide theaters since he was a young boy. With the exception of finding the love of his life and having a family, he has never wanted anything more anxiously in his entire existence.
We believe there’s a good reason why the The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the Mormon Church) has not, and we believe will not, make a Book of Mormon war epic. A Book of Mormon war epic produced under the official banner of the Mormon Church would not, in our opinion, be able to reach the masses.
The Church is a non-profit organization with layers upon layers of approval. Stated plainly, they’re not in the business of worldwide blockbuster filmmaking. The church is, in fact, currently in production with some Book of Mormon vignettes for a new Book of Mormon Audio Visual library, like the Bible videos they did recently. These will likely not reach many who are outside the Mormon Church, and almost certainly won’t reach the masses. The Book of Mormon is a universally read book by religious and irreligious alike.
Our film is about a hero who lived 2000 years ago and rallied his people to the call of freedom to save a dwindling nation. The Mormon church espouses a doctrine of inclusion. The epic stories from The Book of Mormon were intended for the masses and they won't reach the masses unless the film is done independently. The stories must be portrayed in a way the world can understand-- EPIC and with the a necessary allowance of creative freedom.
Our specific locations have not been chosen yet. There is much to consider, including budget and the time of year we are filming. Locations are chosen once the script is locked and we begin pre-production.
There is much speculation as to where Book of Mormon events took place. We’re also not naive that some think they didn’t take place at all. The focus of our film is not to convince every scientific inquirer of the authenticity of the Book of Mormon.
Our purpose is to deliver an action-packed experience filled with love, epic conflict, and freedom guaranteed to be riveting. Does anyone really care that they didn’t use kilts in the time Braveheart took place? The Book of Mormon was not intended as a geography book.
We’ve made strong historical choices that reflect what we know today and create the feeling of an ancient world. You’re gonna love it!
No. One of our consulting producers is a born-again Christian and he is thrilled about this project. In fact, nearly all of the Hollywood professionals we’ve consulted, believe it or not, have been very supportive of (and genuinely intrigued with) what we are doing.
Yes, the writer/actor Darin Southam, is an active Mormon who has made a lifelong study of the Book of Mormon and an enthusiastic fan of Captain Moroni.
We feel it extremely important to have, as one of our producers, someone deeply familiar with and passionate about the record our film is based on. Mark Burnett is Catholic and produced Son of God—and he did a masterful job doing so.
No. He is said to have translated it from ancient gold plates, which he discovered (through the help of a Heavenly Messenger) in a buried concrete depository located in modern day Palmyra NY.
One cannot allege Joseph Smith wrote (or invented) the Book of Mormon without, at the same time, giving him much unintended credit. Joseph Smith received only 3 years of formal education. To say that he invented 531 pages of text, teeming with literary and Semitic complexity, without honestly attempting to account for the origin of those pages, is akin to saying Joseph Smith was a prodigy unlike any we’ve ever seen.
To put it another way, “I cannot understand how any intelligent (person) could think that anyone without the help of the Lord could have produced the Book of Mormon.” - Heber J. Grant