No one buys tickets for 'Passion' rerelease

Saturday, March 12, 2005

The first screening of "The Passion Recut," a rerelease of "The Passion of the Christ," never showed at Cape West 14 Cine Friday because no tickets were sold.

The film, released in time for Holy Week and Easter, has a softer appeal because about seven minutes of graphic footage have been cut. But the original success of the movie and DVD sales may keep many away from the big screen for a repeat viewing.

"It was such a big movie last year. A lot of people have already seen it, especially in this area. Churches rented private screenings and invited everyone they could to attend," said Kevin Dillion, general manager for Cape West 14 Cine. "All that has an impact on ticket sales."

Centenary United Methodist Church was one of the four congregations last year to reserve a private screening at the theater, but the church will not do so again because it bought the DVD through the film's Web site.

The DVD includes film clips and stills that can be incorporated into worship services.

Centenary United Methodist Church will show the film at the church March 25 as a way to remind the congregation of the events surrounding the day. The film will be incorporated with the Good Friday sermon; a discussion will follow.

This year, the congregation will have to bear through the violent scenes of the uncut version, but the Rev. Clayton L. Smith says next year the church will show the recut film when it becomes available for private viewing.

Smith expects the film to become a Good Friday tradition. He said it is important for Christians to repeatedly watch the movie because it provides hope in a world full of violence.

"The story of redemption through the suffering of [God's] son tells us that something good can come from all that horrendous suffering," said Smith.

"The Passion of the Christ" will also be screened at Lynwood Baptist Church on March 20.

cpierce@semissourian.com

335-6611, extension 127

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