Reza Aslan, who was the subject of one of Fox News’ most embarrassing interviews of all time, is now seeing his book Zealot, about the life of Jesus of Nazareth, made into a movie by Lionsgate Films. Aslan released a statement, expressing his excitement over seeing his New York Times #1 bestseller become a movie:
“I am thrilled to have the opportunity to work with Lionsgate. Their vision for Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth is aligned with my objective in writing the book, which was to illuminate the life of Jesus in a humanistic, as opposed to religious, context.”
It would be interesting to peer into an alternate universe in which Reza Aslan’s interview with Fox News went normally, and caused no notable reaction. Would Aslan’s book have become a bestseller? Would it now become a movie? Fox News, in its attempt to discredit Aslan’s study of Jesus purely because Aslan is a Muslim, has amplified Aslan’s work beyond anything that they could have imagined.
Aslan does make controversial claims in Zealot—for instance, that Jesus’ mother was not a virgin—but Fox News host Lauren Green focused on Aslan’s Muslim faith as opposed to anything substantive in the book.
Lionsgate makes many small and independent films, but is also responsible for mega hits, like the Hunger Games movie series and the Twilight series.