Ray Richmond contributes to Deadline’s TV coverage.
Mark Burnett said today that his mega-rated History Channel miniseries The Bible is being recut into a single three-hour edition for theatrical release. Burnett revealed the news tonight following an NBC Summer Press Day closing panel promoting The Voice, which he exec produces. Burnett said that it has no studio affiliation or distribution agreement yet but that he has “many offers” for getting the revised version into theaters on a global scale. One option would be to distribute it himself, with a target goal of this fall. “We’re in the position where it’s just a matter of choosing” the right venue and situation, Burnett emphasized. “We could put it into arenas. There are a lot of possible choices we could go with.” He hinted that going the unconventional route is his likely first choice, a scenario reminiscent of Mel Gibson’s with his feature The Passion Of The Christ back in 2004. “We kind of operate outside the business, we do our own thing,” Burnett said. “It’s a good position to be in.” Burnett exulted that The Bible was viewed in the United States alone by some 100 million people and tens of millions more internationally. “All of those people who rolled their eyes three years ago and said nobody’s going to watch The Bible on TV, well, they were wrong,” he said. “But I wasn’t surprised. I knew it would work like it did.” How did he know? “God,” Burnett replied. “It was God’s voice. Too many things happened to see it any other way.”