The Chosen –

The conservative panic regarding political bias within Hollywood predated the current conservative panic. Tinseltown is a solidly blue place. Those to the left have felt the need for secrecy and traditional Christian values are almost an atrocity. Entertainment products that attempt to depict religion positively have often suffered from low budgets, lack of technical skills, and the temptation to place preaching before plot.

With The ChosenDallas Jenkins, the director of Dallas Jenkins, wanted to make that change. This series on the life and times of Christ was billed as the most crowdfunded media project. It raised $10 million each for its first eight episodes. The Angel Studios app now allows you to stream the entire series for free. The series hopes to bring in $100 million more for five additional seasons. It would cost approximately $2.5million per episode and be comparable to many other high-end cable television programs.

The Chosen has received virtually no attention from mainstream critics, yet the audience ratings are sterling. It may not seem like much, considering Hollywood’s routine mockery of Christians and the track record for wildly bad Christian media productions. I was one of many viewers who only viewed the program reluctantly.

The scripts and acting are indeed hit or miss—but when they hit, the result is something special. Filmmaking is an enjoyable experience. The characters are surprisingly human. What is most intriguing about this series, however, is the possibility that it will lead to a future where less-represented groups are able to bypass industry gatekeepers, and even fund quality projects.