According to The Christian Post, Michael W. Smith has been cast as a disciple of Jesus Christ in “The Passion,” a live musical event that will air March 20 (Palm Sunday) on Fox and will be hosted by Tyler Perry. In an earlier Inquisitr article, it was mentioned that Trisha Yearwood was cast as Mary, the mother of Jesus, and Prince Royce will play Peter, another disciple of Jesus.
Smith is a multi-Grammy award winning contemporary Christian singer, and should fit right into the character of a disciple of Jesus. Michael is a veteran of both contemporary Christian and mainstream music, his 1991 crossover mainstream hit “Place in this World” launched him into a long-lived career. Along with Trisha Yearwood and Prince Royal, Smith is joining several other notable talented cast members in “The Passion.”
Based on a Dutch live musical that has taken place in the Netherlands, The Passion will be a modern-day version of the last days of Jesus Christ before his crucifixion. The Dutch version was created by Eye2Eye Media’s Jacco Doornbos and has aired live for the last five years. The version that Tyler Perry will host and narrate will be aired live from New Orleans. Grammy award-winner Yolanda Adams will kick off the musical with a special live performance.
Other members of “The Passion” include Jencarlos Canela as Jesus, Chris Daughtry as Judas, and Seal as Pontius Pilate. Jencarlos Canela is a Latin singer-songwriter who debuted as a theater actor n the 2008 musical “Miami Libre” and is currently starring in “Telenova” on NBC with Eva Longoria. Daughtry was a runner-up on American Idol and Seal (“Kiss From A Rose”) has an amazing voice that has won him several music awards. The cast of “The Passion” seems to really be shaping up into a great ensemble of talent.
The mayor of New Orleans, Mitch Landrieu, gave a statement shared with The Christian Post that said how exciting it was for The Passion to come to New Orleans.
“We are excited that New Orleans has been chosen as the location for “The Passion.”
Music producer Adam Anders also said in a statement to CP, “‘The Passion’ is one of the most exciting and compelling projects that I have ever been involved with.”
“I cannot wait to bring the greatest-story-ever-told to life through music in a way that has never been heard before. To be able to create new arrangements of some of the biggest songs of all time and to create a live film score is a creative dream for me.”
“The Passion” that will unfold in New Orleans was written by Peter Barsocchini (High School Musical), and is of course, set in modern-day times. In the Dutch version of the musical, Jesus is arrested by police officers and put in a real police car. During his trial, Jesus is wearing an orange jumpsuit.
According to CP, the New Orleans version will include some of NO’s most iconic locations and will feature a “procession of hundreds of people carrying a 20-foot illuminated cross from Champion Square outside the Superdome to the live stage at Woldenberg Park on the banks of the Mississippi river.”
Michael W. Smith has won three Grammy awards, 45 Dove awards, and an AMA award. Smith has also acted in two movies, The Second Chance, and 90 Minutes in Heaven. Smith also helped with the score and soundtrack on both films. Smith also appeared as Billy Holden in Secret Adventures: Shrug which was a sitcom that aired on the Learning Channel in 1984. This was actually Michael’s first acting gig.
It is not yet known which disciple Michael W. Smith will portray, but he is definitely qualified to play any of them. Which disciple do you think Smith will play in “The Passion”?
Watch this amazing video from The Passion screenplay by Mel Gibson set to “Let It Rain” as sung by Michael W. Smith.
[Photo By Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP]