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Kelly Merryman Hoogstraten, Dallas Jenkins and Jon Erwin COURTESY OF AMAZON

Amazon Prime makes huge play for faith-based audience

With a new production pact, Amazon is making a major bet on faith-based entertainment and hopes to create a pipeline of Christian-focused films and television shows.

Amazon MGM Studios announced this week that it is partnering with Jon Erwin, co-director of “Jesus Revolution” and the company The Wonder Project, headed by Kelly Merryman Hoogstraten, a former executive at Netflix and YouTube. Dallas Jenkins is among its largest shareholders and special advisers of The Wonder Project.

As per the agreement, “House of David,” a series chronicling King David of Israel’s ascent to power, is Amazon Prime Video’s first ordered production. The streaming series does not yet have a set release date.

Founded last year, the independent film company The Wonder Project aims to create “stories that restore faith in things worth believing in.” The United Talent Agency (UTA), Lionsgate, and Jason Blum are some of the studio’s backers.

“When we met with Jon, Kelly and Dallas[jenkins], their clear and passionate vision for The Wonder Project and their ambition to nurture universal stories of love, triumph and spirituality moved us,” Amazon MGM Studios‘ head of TV Vernon Sanders said in a statement. “We are thrilled to share this epic and many more with our global Prime Video customers. We are very excited about the scope, scale, and storytelling involved with ‘House of David.'”

Christian-themed entertainment on Prime has proven to be very popular and the company hopes toe expand on the offerings.

One of Prime Video’s most-streamed programs in recent months is “The Chosen”, the popular television series that dramatizes the life of Jesus.

“Sound of Freedom” is another movie available on Prime Video. Since its premiere last month, the film has routinely placed among the top 10 most-viewed movies on the platform.

Vernon Sanders, head of TV at Amazon MGM Studios, stated in a statement.

–Dwight Widaman | Metro Voice

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