Cinematic Evangelical Outreach
March 7, 2005 7:15 PM   Subscribe

Motive Entertainment has staked out a niche in marketing to Christian audiences and they have been working with Disney in promoting The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe to evangelicals. They previously worked on the Faith-Market campaigns for Passion of the Christ and the Polar Express.
posted by Arch Stanton (15 comments total)
But doesn't Disney want to downplay Lewis's Christian allegory? But then again, that would be untrue to the author. In simply hoping that an adaptation of a beloved fantasy novel doesn't suck, I find myself having to choose sides between right-wing Christian activists and the Disney corporation. *head asplode*
posted by Faint of Butt at 7:22 PM on March 7, 2005

For the second article:

posted by Arch Stanton at 7:26 PM on March 7, 2005

Title: "The Chronicles of Narnia"
Production Co.: Walden Media
Distribution: Disney
posted by quonsar at 7:37 PM on March 7, 2005

Alternate non-registration article for the second link.
posted by Arch Stanton at 7:43 PM on March 7, 2005

What was that difference between marketing and religion again?
posted by ulotrichous at 8:14 PM on March 7, 2005

God is everywhere, ulotrichous, so your questions are redundant. Everything is God.
posted by Kleptophoria! at 9:16 PM on March 7, 2005

Would they market this, I wonder.
posted by Jim Jones at 3:26 AM on March 8, 2005

Maybe proselytization is the word you're thinking of? (And theology would be the quality-control department.)
posted by alumshubby at 3:38 AM on March 8, 2005

Faint of Butt : "I find myself having to choose sides between right-wing Christian activists and the Disney corporation."

Nah, you can always go for option 3: hoping that the right-wing Christian activists pour tons of money into fighting Disney, Disney pours tons of money into fighting back, and the movie is massively pirated, thereby annoying Disney, and popular, thereby annoying the Christian activists.

ulotrichous : " What was that difference between marketing and religion again?"

Which part? The "one sells product, the other is about the nature of the universe" part? The "one is a method of convincing people to pay money to a corporation, the other one is a belief system focussed on a deity part"? The "one starts with an 'm', the other starts with an 'r' part"? Or the "they're pretty much completely different unless you want to show off your cool cynicism by pretending to not see a difference" part?

Er, the last part isn't really a difference, is it? Sorry.
posted by Bugbread at 4:02 AM on March 8, 2005


Well, arguably they both "sell product".

Marketing: get money. Religion: get converts.

I agree that they differ fundamentally, but there are striking similarities.
posted by exlotuseater at 4:54 AM on March 8, 2005

Er, evangelism=get converts. Religion != evangelism.

But, true, there are similarities. I'm not disagreeing there.
posted by Bugbread at 5:16 AM on March 8, 2005

Wasn't there (at one time) a flap in some fundamentalist circles about how the magic in C.S. Lewis' books was satanic?

Or is that just Tolkien and Rowling?

I'm conflicted here as well. There's sooo many ways this film could go wrong. Before reading this, I was afraid that they might make this Narnia-Lite -- all the fun and none of the thinking. Now I'm afraid they could get ham-handed about the themes, which Lewis would have been upset with, I think. There's a quote from Humphrey Carpenter's group biography The Inklings in which he talks about tasting a reality through Story, versus having it pounded out by discourse that I like, and I hope the producers have read it or something like it.

One encouraging thing from the second article, tho':
The film is also being co-produced by Douglas Gresham, the stepson of C S Lewis, who runs a religious retreat in Dublin. He insisted that the film was faithful to the book and would be enjoyed by Christians and others.
posted by weston at 7:34 AM on March 8, 2005

They previously worked on the Faith-Market campaigns for ...the Polar Express.

The heart-warming moral of which is...Christians are scary pod people?
posted by straight at 7:50 AM on March 8, 2005

My mind boggles at even the concept of the possibility of a "secular" Narnia series, but I suppose my perspective is skewed by currently reading the series to my own kid, around the fifth time through all of them. I'm still encountering stuff that seems so blazingly obvious - duh, Santa Claus = John the Baptist! - but which I missed all the previous times, and I forget how it was to read the stories the first time, and only have the Christian message slowly dawn on me.
posted by soyjoy at 10:15 AM on March 8, 2005

Tolkien really hated Lewis' heavy-handed use of religious allegory. He thought it was way too overt. Tolkien opted for a more pagan flavour to get out some of the same Christian ideas.

The whole Aslan thing was pretty obvious, even when I was but a weeeeee boy!

I don't think Lewis ever got in too much trouble with people over the religious aspects, especially since he was quite the apologist himself.
posted by Kleptophoria! at 2:06 PM on March 8, 2005

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