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NBC to air sequel to ‘The Bible’ miniseries

Original aired with record ratings

OW Staff Writer | 7/5/2013, midnight

Everything gets a sequel these days, and that includes “The Bible.”

The Mark Burnett miniseries, which aired on The History Channel in the spring to record ratings, is now getting a second act on NBC.

“A.D.: Beyond the Bible” (a working title) starts “in the dark days after Jesus’ betrayal and death,” a statement from NBC says. “A perfect storm brews in the Holy Land, fueled by social injustice, Roman military oppression and religious unrest. . . . And in the face of terrible odds and brutal persecution, the small band of Jesus’ disciples stand against the combined might of Rome and their own local authorities. In a generation of rebellion, war, famine, and carnage, who can they trust?”

Burnett will again executive produce the follow-up to his original 10-part miniseries with his wife, Roma Downey, and Richard Bedser.

“Our new series, ‘A.D.: Beyond the Bible,’ is another massive project and a major commitment, but it’s a story that has to be told,” Burnett and Downey said in a statement. “It’s a story that changed the world. We look forward to making this an enormous television event on NBC.”

NBC is looking forward to airing the project—and likely to reaping its potential ratings—as well.

“I followed the development process of ‘The Bible’ closely with Mark and knew that the story was far from over after Christ’s Crucifixion,” NBC Chairman of Entertainment, Bob Greenblatt, said in a statement. “In fact, what happened in the aftermath—which is essentially the beginning of Christianity —is utterly fascinating. The day after ‘The Bible’ premiered, I told Mark we were on board with no hesitation for the follow-up miniseries. This will be attention-getting in every way, and we’re proud to continue our association with Mark which has just grown exponentially from ‘The Voice.’”