"The Bible" a Labor of Love for Famed Producer, Wife

The five-week, 10-hour TV special was nurtured by "Touched by an Angel" star Roma Downey and husband Mark Burnett. He's the force behind such major TV successes as Survivor and The Voice. They say it has already changed lives.

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David. One of the episodes that was of the most importance to us bridges from the Old Testament to the New Testament.”

Abraham and Isaac prepare for a sacrfice in “The Bible”

“We did that through the story of Daniel in the Lion’s Den, which, of course, tells how the conquering Persian king saw without a doubt that Daniel’s God is the only true God – and releases the Jewish people from their exile, allowing them to go back from Babylon to Jerusalem.

“There’s great celebration, but Daniel’s prophecy is such that he knows that the worst is yet to come – and we fire forward showing the clash of shields and marching of feet of the Roman Empire as we find ourselves in Galilee during the hard times, that oppressed era the Savior chose to dwell among men.”

Were there times when Burnett and Downey wondered why they took on such a massive undertaking?

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“Oh, there were tough days obviously, but we never really wondered why we were doing it. It’s a project we’ve wanted to do for a long time,” says Burnett. “We love the Bible and, you know, when you have a couple of hundred people in a difficult location like the edge of the Sahara desert, anything can get difficult.

“We had a good sense of humor and we surrounded ourselves with an incredible film crew, a special kind of people. They’re problems solvers, not problem creators or complainers. That was the key, surrounding ourselves with the right kind of people to take on such an important project as this which means so much to both Monica and me.

“Nothing was that hard when you look back on it,” he said. “If you

asked the same question maybe a year ago on the wrong day, when we were exhausted and we were thinking ‘Oh, wow, this is so tough–’”

Roma Downey portraying Mary, mother of Jesus

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Rob Kerby, Senior Editor
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