A new film hits theaters Friday detailing the story of what one member calls “the biggest band you’ve never heard of.”
The film, "Hillsong: Let Hope Rise," chronicles the journey of the Australian-based Christian worship band Hillsong United.
Hillsong United was launched in 1998 as a youth group band at Hillsong Church in Sydney, Australia. Since then, the band has gathered a large following all over the world. Their song "Oceans (Where Feet May Fail)" spent 156 weeks on Billboard’s Hot Christian Songs chart and 61 weeks at No. 1, the chart’s record for first place.
In an interview with TheBlaze on Thursday, band members Jad Gillies, Taya Smith and Jonathon “JD” Douglass said that they hope the film is an uplifting and encouraging experience for viewers.
“No one is more surprised than us that those songs have travelled around the world and helped so many people,” Douglass said. “We wrote them hoping some of our friends would like them and be encouraged by them, but really it’s been this incredible journey over a number of years that we’ve been able to be on and the film really shows and tells that story.”
The movie — billed as a "theatrical worship experience" — was directed by Michael John Warren, who also directed "Fade to Black," a documentary about rapper Jay-Z.
“It was a genre that they came up with because it probably hasn’t really been done before,” Smith said. “You know, the fact that in the cinemas, the lyrics actually come up on screen as the songs are being played, I think it’s happened in pre-screenings that people are standing up and worshiping, and I don’t really think that’s happened before in the cinemas.”
“We hope that people would have an encounter with the presence of God,” Smith added.
Douglass said that the film is something people could bring their friends or family to who have “never set foot inside a church or maybe had a bad experience.”
“Hopefully this shows a really healthy perspective, a really healthy and honest perspective of what we believe in,” he continued.
Gillies said he hopes viewers leave the film “with some hope, in a world that is so hope-less.”
Watch the film’s trailer below:
You can find out more about the film here.
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