After the breakout success of God's Not Dead, faith-based film studio Pure Flix Entertainment is gearing up to produce a sequel. Pure Flix CEO and managing partner Michael Scott said his studio has a number of projects in the works for next year, including God's Not Dead 2.
"We've got a full slate next year. You'll see Do You Believe?, which is coming in the spring ... we're looking at late March for the release [and] next year possibly either fall or the following year you'll see God's Not Dead 2," Scott said.
God's Not Dead took the world by surprise following its March release. Despite the film's small $2 million budget, Scott said it earned $9.2 million in its first week in theaters, finishing fifth in the U.S. box office. The film earned another $8.5 to $9 million the following week, holding on to its fifth place spot and eventually jumping to fourth in U.S. box offices.
The cast for new film has not been announced.
Scott said making God's Not Dead was an "incredible journey." Even before the movie came out in theaters, he said the trailer "exploded onto the web" with millions of views. "We became the Number 1 page (on) Facebook in the world during the week of the trailer's release," said Scott. The movie's popularity also was bolstered by the hit song with the same name as the film by Christian contemporary-music group the Newsboys.
The story revolves around a college freshman by the name of Josh Wheaton (played by Shane Harper) who enrolls in a philosophy class taught by an infamous dictatorial Professor Radisson (Kevin Sorbo). In order for each student to pass the class, they have to sign the declaration that "God's Dead." Josh refuses, and he goes all the way to defend his faith. With his grades, his reputation and his relation to other students at stake, Josh engages in a series of debates with the professor.
The reasons this movie is must-viewing for every Christian are twofold: First, this movie will give affirmation to many of our young adults that it is not uncool to take a stand for Jesus. Just because Christians are in the minority, doesn't mean it's plebeian, something to be sneered at. Second, Christianity is not a crutch for the unthinking. The Christian faith in fact invites scrutiny; it can be examined, questioned and tried. And it will still come out strong, reliable and trustworthy. These are two themes running right through the movie.
Prior to God's Not Dead, the Arizona-based film studio had produced 25 to 30 movies and distributed 75 films worldwide. Many of those were direct-to-DVD or TV movies. God's Not Dead was Pure Flix's second theatrical movie following the 2010 film What If.
The studio is currently filming Do You Believe? in Michigan, according to a report on christianpost.com. The film follows a group of characters: a pastor who is re-examining his faith, a veteran suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder and a gangbanger who is fighting against belief, among others, who all struggle with various problems.
The characters' stories intersect in a way that reveals the "redemptive power of the cross." The cast includes Cybill Shepherd, Lee Majors, Ted McGinley and UFC Champion Mavrick von Haug. Pure Flix hopes to finish filming Do You Believe? by the end of this month.
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