This year marks the 35th anniversary of The Jesus Film, and to mark the occasion it has been remastered in HD quality on Blu-Ray and DVD in order to propel its legacy as the most viewed film to ever be released.
In a recent interview, Campus Crusade Executive Director Erick Schenkel talked about the popularity of the Christian film when it first appeared in movie theaters circa 1979.
"At first it had a theater run in the United States. We thought, 'Great! People are getting to see the story of Jesus,'" said Schenkel to CBN News. "But then as we saw Him use it in language after language around the world and saw the potential and then began to build strategies around that, it has just been a big part of Campus Crusade's work globally."
The Jesus Film, also known as JESUS, has been officially accredited by The Guinness Book of World Records as the "Most Translated Film" in history, and is now available in 1,197 languages. Additionally, The New York Times stated that the film is "likely to be the most-watched motion picture of all time."
"They didn't think Jesus was for them, but when they saw The Jesus Film in their own language, all the Central Asian languages, Kazakh, Kyrgyz, Uzbek and saw Jesus speaking their language, they understood that Jesus saw them and loved them," said Schenkel, reminiscing on the eleven years spent living in Central Asia, working with film engineers to repair the classic film. "And so we saw movements of people coming to Christ in every one of these people groups."
Furthermore, the legendary film has been responsible for leading at least 200 million people to accepting Jesus Christ as their Lord and savior.
"Thirty-five years, there have 6 billion viewings of The Jesus Film. Now some of the people that viewed it have passed on and some people have seen it more than once," said Schenkel. "But 6 billion viewings of the film and over 200 million people have indicated they wanted to become followers of Jesus after seeing the film. So the reach is just more than we could have asked and it really has been a privilege to see how God has used this tool."
For more information regarding The Jesus Film HD release, visit www.JESUSFilmHD.com.