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‘Groundbreaking’ Animated Jesus Movie to Be Produced by Jesus Film Project

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The Jesus Film Project on Thursday announced an ambitious new project that will introduce the story of Christ to a “new generation” with a feature-length animated film about Jesus set for release Christmas 2025.

The new film called simply JESUS, will employ “cutting-edge film technology” and be directed by Dominic Carola, who previously worked in the animation department on Lilo & Stitch (2002), Mulan (1998), Pocahontas (1995) and The Lion King (1994). He co-directed the 2022 faith-based movie Being.   

A news release called the film “groundbreaking.”

“Our mission is to reach everyone, everywhere,” Josh Newell, executive director of the Jesus Film Project, said Thursday at an event announcing the new movie. 

The median age of the world is 30, he noted. 

“The world is very young. The unreached are very young,” he said. “… So, what if we had a tool that was like the Jesus Film and had that same kind of impact but for this generation, by this generation?”

The original Jesus Film was released in 1979. It was live-action. 

“I feel honored to serve with this truly dream team of feature animation veterans and impressive studio industry artisans,” Carola said. “We are working towards presenting the true story of Jesus beautifully animated and making His story more accessible to the world. Leaning into a classic artistic approach, we’re combining that with groundbreaking digital innovations to deliver a visually stunning and emotionally resonant portrayal of Jesus’ life like never before.”

Subsequent aspects of the film will “be used across various platforms, including virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and the emerging Metaverse,” Carola added. 

The 1979 movie was directed by Paul Eshelman. His daughter, Jen Huff, applauded the new movie. The goal is to translate the new film into more than 2,000 languages. 

“Through the 1979 JESUS film, tens of millions of people came to know Jesus,” she said. “It’s a blessing to see the continuation of that legacy, JESUS (2025), and to know that tens of millions more people will get to know the hope of the gospel. This film will authentically portray the greatest story of all time to the world, in people’s heart languages and across traditional and digital mediums — it’s so exciting.”
Click here to watch the announcement.

Photo Courtesy:  Jesus Film Project.

Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, the Leaf-Chroniclethe Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.

Looking for Wholesome Family Films This Christmas Season? Listen to Our Culture Expert Share Her Top 5 Family-Centered Films – Perfect for Family Movie Night!

The views and opinions expressed in this podcast are those of the speakers and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of Salem Web Network and Salem Media Group.

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