• Thomas Bonifield

Dizzying Heights for "The Chosen"

This dramatic series about the life of Christ climbs into the top 250 highest ranked shows of all time.

Roman soldiers rough up locals in a scene from season one. Image: "The Chosen"/Instagram.

From Christian director Dallas Jenkins, The Chosen has charted its own course from the very beginning, financing last year's inaugural season exclusively via crowdfunding, something it did better than any other media project: it brought in a record $10 million. This first-ever multi-season show about Jesus' earthly life and ministry also eschewed traditional distribution, instead partnering with the VidAngel streaming platform and launching its own app to make the show available to a worldwide audience.


Graphic from IMDb/"The Chosen"/Instagram.

And have those viewers ever responded. The program has already been watched 21 million times, and now comes word that it is the 227th highest rated show ever among IMDb users. The rankings from that organization, which tracks anything and everything in the movie and TV entertainment businesses, are fluid and can change, but to have gotten that high says a great deal about the inroads The Chosen is making.


Jenkins hopes it will run seven or eight seasons and has set the extremely ambitious goal of one billion views. His team is translating the show into dozens of languages to spread it around the globe in an effort to hit that target, which ultimately is about sharing the good news of Jesus' Gospel. They are still raising funds for season two - approximately $3.2 million of the $10 million needed is now in hand - and hope to shoot and release all eight episodes this year.


If you'd like to watch season one, or contribute via its pay-it-forward program, you can do so by downloading The Chosen app at Google Play or the Apple store. If you prefer the internet to the app route, then this link takes you to the show and this one allows you to pay it forward, which is the primary funding mechanism for the second season.

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