Monday, August 03, 2009

Jesus films latest: a new "Superstar" and "Him"

Over on Bible Films, Matt Page notes (from Peter Chattaway) that there may be a new version of Jesus Christ SuperItalicstar in the works. As a fan of the original 1973 film ("Do you think you're what they say you are?"), I have the same mixed feelings about a new version as I have had in the past about popular culture's search for big money reboots (e.g. The Prisoner, Doctor Who, and the music of Abba, just to list my obsessions). I would be delighted if it works, but ready to pour scorn if it does not. One of the things that may make Jesus Christ Superstar difficult to recreate for the big screen now, though, is that it is such a period piece. Norman Jewison's 1973 film works because it is so much of its time, and made within only a couple of years of the musical's theatrical debut. On the other hand, theatrical productions have continued now for nearly forty years, and they remain popular, so it will be interesting to see if they can pull it off for a new Superstar. And since the composers (Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice) are still alive, perhaps they could be called upon to do a few updates? A new song or two? That would be interesting.

The other element of curiosity on the Bible Films blog deals with Him, the gay Jesus film. Matt has more to confirm what has become increasingly clear over recent years (See Gay Jesus Film Hoax?) that this is not a hoax. It's probably one of the worst marketed films of all time, though. Imagine a film, with a topic as controversial as that, making so little impact that people wonder seriously whether the film even existed.


Bill Victor said...

Did you see the updated JC Superstar that was staged a few years ago?

James Preston said...

There was an Australian version in the early 90s as well that at least matched the musical quality of the original.