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A Religious Experience

21 Nov, 2005 By: Stephanie Prange

As a child, I enjoyed The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. It was one of my favorite books. I had no insight into its religious overtones. I just thought it was fascinating and read all seven books of the C.S. Lewis series.

But with the movie release of the book, the religious interest in the series is hitting a pitch unseen since The Passion of the Christ. At my church at least, kids and adults are picking up the book and discussing it in special classes before Sunday school.

Before the church took to promoting the movie, I don't think I had particularly high hopes for the film. I thought it might come off as an older, more quaint version of the “Harry Potter” books and get lost in the hype for the wizardry series.

But seeing the anticipation in the religious community, I'm hopeful the story will gain a wide audience, and perhaps the movie industry will gain a franchise that, like “Potter,” will be seven books long.

Earlier this year, I lamented the fact that several franchises, including “The Lord of the Rings” and “Star Wars,” were exhausted, leaving a void. Here's hoping “The Chronicles of Narnia,” the first of which hits theaters Dec. 9, will take up the franchise mantle — and propel the theatrical and DVD business for years to come.

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