“They are truly family,” Katherine Warnock says of the cast members of “The Chosen.”
The cast of the popular streaming series “The Chosen” is back on set to film Season Four, and “what you see on screen is truly authentic behind the camera as well,” says Warnock, vice president of original content for “The Chosen.” Filming of the new season kicked off at the end of March.
The series follows Jesus and his 12 disciples through the three years of Christ’s ministry. Episodes in the first three seasons have been viewed more than 500 million times, according to Angel Studios, the show’s distributor.
There are about 30 regulars in the cast this season, Warnock told The Daily Signal. “They really love each other. They really support each other,” she said.
Off the set, “They’re playing football games all the time. They’re playing Frisbee,” Warnock said, adding, “the sweat you see in the scenes is real because they were probably just off screen having a massive pileup playing Frisbee.”
Warnock oversees special projects for the show, which includes large undertakings on set like the miracle of the feeding of the 5,000 in Season Three.
While Warnock said she can’t reveal any “spoilers” for Season Four, “it’s going to be another hard-hitting season, where we grapple with the realities of what it is to follow Jesus.”
In the new season, Warnock said, she is excited for the show to further explore “what it is to be a Christian, that human insight into how much Jesus allows people to be in process that I think we often overlook or dismiss or minimize, and so, I love that [in] this season, we will portray that in vastly new ways.”
Director Dallas Jenkins, Ryan Swanson, and Tyler Thompson write the scripts for each season and Biblical scholars review them, Warnock said, adding that the show is currently onboarding some Jewish scholars to ensure the show accurately portrays what life was like for the Jewish people under Roman rule in Jesus’ time.
While Season Four dives deeper into what it means to follow Jesus, Warnock said, “the tension is ramping up—both the power, the beauty, but also the tragedy. And isn’t that the reality of life?”
At the center of that tension is Jesus, portrayed by actor Jonathan Roumie, whom Warnock describes as a “brilliant method actor.” Method acting is a style in which the actor or actress seeks to fully embody the character he or she is portraying.
According to Warnock, “[Roumie] will say … ‘This is the one character I never try to let go of.’”
“He is so sincere. He is so deeply loving, and he really, really loves Jesus,” Warnock said of the actor, adding that his ability to portray the Messiah is in part due to his talent as a method actor, but also “his profound personal relationship with Jesus.”
“He knows this is the role he was created to do, so he takes it as, like, a missional assignment, if you will,” she said.
Some new characters will be introduced in Season Four, and “some of the characters that maybe were more in the background come to more of the forefront this season,” she said, explaining that every season, the show chooses several ensemble characters to focus on and further develop.
A lot of extras will be needed for scenes this season, something Warnock says she will oversee.
Filming of Season Four will take between four to five months, according to Warnock. The majority of the new season will be filmed on the same 900-acre property as Season Three, near Midlothian, Texas, about 30 miles south of Dallas. The property includes a large replica of a first-century village.
The cast and crew will move to Utah for the month of July to film on the Goshen movie set, a replica of Jerusalem owned by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.
While an official release date for season four has not yet been determined, Warnock says the hope is to begin releasing the new episodes in January. The first three seasons have each run eight episodes that average about 45 minutes to an hour per episode.
While the first two episodes of Season Three were first released in theaters, there are no plans right now for a theatrical release of Season Four, but “there’s always the potential,” she said.
The series began as an entirely crowd-funded endeavor with Season One becoming the highest crowd-funded entertainment project of all-time, raising $10 million from more than 19,000 people, according to “The Chosen” website. The project raised more than $50 million for the production of Seasons Two and Three through a disruptive fan-supported model.
The series, the first multiseason series about Jesus, is being planned for a seven-season run. The sixth season will “grapple with the realities of Jesus being crucified and dying,” Warnock said.
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