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After 'Exodus' Lead Actor Calls Moses 'Schizophrenic' and 'Barbaric,' Doubts Loom About Movie's Biblical Message


"I think the man was likely schizophrenic and was one of the most barbaric individuals that I ever read about in my life."

Christian Bale as Moses in "Exodus."

Actor Christian Bale, who plays Moses in the upcoming movie "Exodus: Gods and Kings," doesn't appear to be a fan of the biblical figure he's portraying.

Christian Bale as Moses in "Exodus." Christian Bale as Moses in "Exodus."

"I think the man was likely schizophrenic and was one of the most barbaric individuals that I ever read about in my life," the Oscar winner told international reporters of Moses in Los Angeles last month.

Since Christianity Today first reported on Bale's comments Tuesday, the Hollywood Reporter noted that bloggers and others who've been optimistic about the movie's prospects for biblical adherence now aren't so sure.

More from the Hollywood Reporter:

Film critic Peter Chattaway at multi-faith website, for example, seems troubled because Bale “speculates about what was going on inside Moses’ head.” He’s also bothered because director Ridley Scott told Entertainment Weekly that it’s not Moses or God who will part the Red Sea, but that it will be caused by an earthquake.

Faith Driven Consumer, an organization that raised a stink just prior to the opening of Noah, also is disturbed by Bale's remarks, though founder Chris Stone has yet to pass them along to the group's followers, which he says numbers in millions via email lists and social media.

As TheBlaze previously reported, Faith Driven Consumer conducted a scientific poll about "Exodus" that found 73 percent of all American adults would be likely to see "Exodus" if it "accurately portrays the biblical account of Moses leading the Jewish people out of captivity." But it also found that 67 percent of all American adults would be unlikely to see the movie if it doesn't accurately portray the Bible.

“It’s our sincerest hope that this movie resonates with our community, so we sent them the results of our poll,” Stone told the Hollywood Reporter. “Their response was, ‘we don’t need to have any further conversation.’”

The Hollywood Reporter said 20th Century Fox declined to comment on the matter.

More from the Hollywood Reporter:

Just before Noah opened, Stone's group sent missives to Christians nationwide that the movie “appears to have replaced the Bible’s central point of God’s judgment on man’s inherent sin with a story focused on a contemporary environmental theme.” Because of the controversy that swirled around Noah, Stone said he was surprised to see that Bale called Moses “schizophrenic” and “barbaric" ahead of the film's opening on Dec. 12.

“There’s nothing in the biblical history that supports that,” Stone said. “It’s an indication that there will be a tremendous disconnect between Bale’s interpretation and the expectations of the market.”

Christian writer Brian Godawa told the Hollywood Reporter that it's "accurate to portray Moses as an imperfect hero, so Christians won’t take issue with that. But to be so extreme as to call him one of the most barbaric people in history, that sounds like he’s going out of his way to distance himself from the very people you’d think he wants to appeal to."

Added Godawa: "It tells me that he’s worried about Hollywood peer approval while looking down on the public, because he certainly doesn’t want to be associated with the religious or the far right.”

This story has been updated.

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