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Joel Smallbone, Moriah, Lecrae to Star in 'Fresh' Musical about Mary, Joseph

Michael Foust | Contributor | Tuesday, February 28, 2023
Joel Smallbone, Moriah, Lecrae to Star in 'Fresh' Musical about Mary, Joseph

Joel Smallbone, Moriah, Lecrae to Star in 'Fresh' Musical about Mary, Joseph

A three-time Grammy-nominated music producer is working alongside For King and Country’s Joel Smallbone and other well-known Christian artists on a family-friendly musical about Mary and Joseph. It is scheduled to be released in theaters in November.

The film’s director, music producer Adam Anders, received Grammy nominations in 2011 and 2012 for Glee and in 2013 for Rock of Ages and has produced music for faith-based projects The Passion (2016) and Son of God (2014).

“We've been amazed at Adam's ability to tell the widely known story of Mary, Joseph and a jealous king in a way that feels fresh and contemporary, like you've never heard it before,” said Alan Powell of Monarch Media, one of the companies behind the film. Powell previously co-wrote and co-produced the popular Netflix faith-based musical A Week Away. He will produce the film.

Fiona Palomo (Outer Banks) will portray Mary, while Milo Manheim (School Spirits) will portray Joseph. Oscar nominee Antonio Banderas (Puss in Boots: The Last Wish) will play King Herod.

The film also includes For King and Country’s Joel Smallbone, Christian singer Moriah and Christian hip-hop artist Lecrae. Actress Stephanie Gil, known for her role in Fatima (2020), also has a role.

Affirm Films, a Sony company, is behind it.

Anders said he hopes the film inspires audiences.

“I first had the idea for the film years ago when I was looking for a musical to watch with my family at Christmastime,” Anders said. “I want this movie to be a bright light this Christmas season – as bright as the star of Bethlehem.”

The film is described as a “live-action Christmas musical celebration for the entire family” that “weaves classic Christmas melodies into new pop songs in a music-infused retelling of the timeless story of Mary and Joseph and the birth of Jesus.” It will be, a news release said, an “epic Christmas musical” that is “unlike any before it.”

It is being shot on the coast of Spain.

“This joyous and fresh take on Mary and Joseph's journey, combined with the infectious music and insanely passionate vision of Adam Anders made this an undeniable fit for Affirm Films and Sony Pictures to come alongside and help turn this amazing story into a Christmas classic that will resound with young children, families, teens and adults,” said Rich Peluso, executive vice president and head of Affirm.

Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Catherine Powell/Stringer

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.

Joel Smallbone, Moriah, Lecrae to Star in 'Fresh' Musical about Mary, Joseph