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‘His Only Son,’ a Bible Film Made on $250,000, Passes $11 Million: ‘Incredible’

Michael Foust | ChristianHeadlines.com Contributor | Monday, April 10, 2023
‘His Only Son,’ a Bible Film Made on $250,000, Passes $11 Million: ‘Incredible’

‘His Only Son,’ a Bible Film Made on $250,000, Passes $11 Million: ‘Incredible’

A faith-based movie with a $250,000 budget passed the $11 million mark in total gross over the weekend and could be blazing a new trail for the way inspirational movies are produced and distributed. 

Angel Studios’ His Only Son, which follows the biblical story of Abraham and Isaac, grossed an estimated $3.2 million over the Easter weekend for a No. 6 finish and has now made $11,044,046 in roughly a week and a half. 

It was written and directed by David Helling, who was serving as a Marine in Iraq more than a decade ago when he says God “got a hold of my heart” and led him into filmmaking. 

“I wanted to do everything I could to bring others to the Word,” Helling told Christian Headlines.

The movie’s budget of $250,000 was tiny compared to well-known Hollywood movies. For example, The Super Mario Bros. Movie reportedly had a $100 million budget. Creed III cost about $75 million, according to media reports. 

His Only Son received a CinemaScore grade of “A” from moviegoers. It opened at No. 3 on its first weekend. 

Jeffrey Harmon, chief content and marketing officer at Angel Studios, credited the film’s success to the Angel Guild, a group of nearly 100,000 investors and supporters who determine which projects go forward. The idea for the guild, he said, came from a desire “to build a system that actually changes the way films are made.” 

Typically, studio executives are the ones who green-light projects. The Angel Studios model puts that responsibility on the guild. 

“The Angel Guild sifts through all of the content,” Harmon told Christian Headlines. “If the content doesn't reach a certain rank,” it doesn’t get made. 

“We didn't tell the guild [His Only Son is] only a $250,000 production. We didn't tell them that he's a first-time filmmaker,” Harmon said. “They just watch the content and they give their raw opinion on it on the spot.”

His Only Son was one of the three highest-ranked projects in the history of the guild. 

“I don't care if it's low budget if it's good storytelling,” Harmon said. “This movie actually needs to be on the big screen. You need to surrender your distractions and your devices and immerse yourself into this experience.”

The film’s success, he said, has been “incredible.” 

Jared Geesey, senior vice president of global distribution at Angel Studios, called the film the “little indie that could” – a reference to its independent status. 

“We believe that the audience is the future of this industry, and we have faith they’ll prove that over and over again with each new offering they choose to get behind,” Geesey said.


4 Things You Should Know about ‘His Only Son,’ Angel Studio’s Newest Movie

Photo credit: Courtesy Angel Studios

Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, the Leaf-Chroniclethe Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.

‘His Only Son,’ a Bible Film Made on $250,000, Passes $11 Million: ‘Incredible’