For the past two seasons, National Geographic has partnered with Revelations Entertainment (Madame Secretary) to help viewers answer, for themselves, questions involving God. Entitled The Story of God with Morgan Freeman, the host (none other than Freeman himself) goes around the world to in order to find out about various religious topics including evil, miracles, and even the Apocalypse. The show has been picked up by National Geographic for a third season and will focus this time around on deadly sins, visions of God, and that character George Clooney in O Brother, Where Art Thou? referred to as “having a bifurcated tail and carrying a hayfork”—the devil. I recently had the opportunity to talk with the three heads of Revelations Entertainment—Lori McCready, James Younger, and Morgan Freeman—about the upcoming season and what viewers can expect.
McCready mentioned that regarding the series, they felt the devil was just as important as God to cover. It just took three seasons to have room to make it happen. To that effect, the key purpose of the show is to inspire people to have conversations about faith: how it has moved people, changed individuals, and transformed communities. To this end, the show focuses more on individual experiences versus scholar’s viewpoints. These experiences help to reveal more of a dynamism that the viewer will be able to detect.
McCreary notes that the concept of the devil was something that really surprised her during the filming. In Christianity, for example, Jesus is tempted and resists Satan’s advances (see Matthew 4:1-11), but Buddhists are commanded to befriend the devil and his minions. Although there are unique differences between religious faiths, there are also connection points that people can use to build bridges and community, according to Younger. Freeman added, “Don’t be afraid . . . We’re not that far apart.”
The Story of God with Morgan Freeman will be shown on National Geographic beginning March 5th at 9 PM (8 PM Central).