This Bible inspired movie takes a lot of liberties with the original “script”. A lot of the facts are “tweeked” to make better movie viewing. One of the most obvious is that, in the film, Judas Iscariot kills himself by jumping into a fire, but the Gospel accounts of this story say he hung himself.
At Jesus of Nazareth final moments, this film looks back in triumphant retrospect, where the eternal questions of faith and doubt become resolved.
The all-star cast includes Max Von Sydow (as Jesus), Dorothy McGuire (as Mary), Robert Loggia (as Joseph), Charlton Heston (as John the Baptist), Michael Anderson, Jr., Robert Blake, Jamie Farr, David McCallum, Roddy McDowall, Ina Balin, Janet Margolin, Sidney Poitier, Carroll Baker, Pat Boone, Van Heflin, Sal Mineo, Shelley Winters, Ed Wynn, John Wayne, Telly Savalas, Angela Lansbury, Paul Stewart, Harold J. Stone, Martin Landau, Joseph Schildkraut, Victor Buono, Jose Ferrer, Claude Rains, Donald Pleasence, Richard Conte and Cyril Delevanti.
There is no nudity in this film and the sex is implied but not shown.
Trivia: Telly Savalas shaved his head bald for his role as Pontius Pilate. He kept his head shaved for the rest of his life.
One story that has been attributed to this film is about the legend John Wayne (the Duke) who only had one line:
Being a perfectionist, George Stevens did many takes of John Wayne‘s single line, “Truly, this man was the son of God.” A rumor has long persisted that at one stage Stevens pleaded with Wayne to show more emotion, an overwhelming sense of awe. During the next take, Wayne changed the line to, “Aw, truly this man was the son of God.”
This Film is DIGITAL, BLU-RAY & DVD Collection Worthy.