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Targeting 'Les Miserables' to Christians pays off at the box office
Actor Hugh Jackman plays the role of Jean Valjean in the cinematic version of 'Les Misérables'
January 3rd, 2013
02:42 PM ET

Targeting 'Les Miserables' to Christians pays off at the box office

By Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Editor

(CNN)—In spite of tepid reviews from some film critics, "Les Miserables" is booming at the box office, and that financial success can in part be traced to a group of its biggest boosters: Christians, particularly evangelicals whom NBC Universal went after with a microtargeted marketing strategy.

The story in "Les Miserables" is heavy with Christian themes of grace, mercy and redemption. The line everyone seems to remember is "to love another person is to see the face of God.”

NBC Universal looked to capitalize on those components and promoted the film to pastors, Christian radio hosts and influence-makers in the Christian community.

The latest film adaptation of the musical is raking in the cash. As of Wednesday, NBC Universal reported, it had pulled in $80.57 million in 2,814 theaters. After winning Christmas Day, the film finished third in the box office totals over the weekend, according to BoxOfficeMojo.com, narrowly losing out to "The Hobbit" and "Django Unchained" despite being on significantly fewer screens.

FULL POST

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Belief • Christianity • Movies

'Jesus Wife' fragment gets more testing, delays article
A scholarly article based on the 'Jesus Wife' fragment was delayed as researchers waited on further testing.
January 3rd, 2013
02:30 PM ET

'Jesus Wife' fragment gets more testing, delays article

By Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Editor

(CNN) - One of the most anticipated articles in religion circles will be absent from the pages of the January edition of the Harvard Theological Review. Harvard Divinity School professor Karen King's final article on the "Jesus wife" fragment did not make the scholarly journal because further testing on the Coptic papyrus fragment has not been finished.

King announced the findings of the 1.5-by-3 inch, honey-colored fragment in September at the International Association for Coptic Studies conference in Rome. In a draft version of the article submitted for publication in the January edition, King and her co-author said the scrap had written in Coptic, a language used by Egyptian Christians, "Jesus said to them, 'My wife," but was then cut off.

FULL POST

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Belief • Catholic Church • Christianity • Vatican

January 3rd, 2013
05:54 AM ET

Belief Blog's Morning Speed Read for Thursday, January 03, 2013

By Arielle Hawkins, CNN

Here's the Belief Blog’s morning rundown of the top faith-angle stories from around the United States and around the world. Click the headlines for the full stories.

From the Blog:

CNN: Nigerian forces kill 13 Boko Haram militants after church attacks
Islamist militants in Nigeria's restive north have taken the lives of 34 people since Christmas, including 27 Christians attending church services. On Tuesday, the country's military took the fight to Boko Haram's stronghold, killing 13 suspected combatants.

Photos of the Day:


Photo credit: Uriel Sinai/Getty Images

Ultra Orthodox Jewish men pray next to the body of Rabbi Abraham Jacob Friedman of Sadigura Hasidic dynasty during his funeral on January 01, 2013. in Bnei Brak, Israel. The Rabbi was the leader of the Sadigura Hasidic dynasty in Bnei Brak and died at the age of 84.


Photo credit: Arif Ali/AFP/Getty Images

A devotee dances at the shrine of Muslim Sufi Saint Data Ganj Bakhsh in Lahore on January 1, 2013. The three-day festival for Hazrat Ali Bin Usman, popularly known as Data Gunj Bakhsh, started with traditional zeal with a 'chaddar' laying ceremony and the distribution of communal milk at the shrine.

FULL POST

- A. Hawkins

Filed under: Uncategorized

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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.

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