EXCLUSIVE: The prayers of The chosen fans have been informed that season four of the popular series Jesus of Nazareth has obtained a waiver from SAG to continue filming amid the strike.
The show’s official Twitter account tweeted yesterday afternoon PST: “Great news! We have just received a message from SAG that we have been approved for a waiver. We will continue filming on Monday.
The Utah-shot series barely missed a beat, only having to film a day or two without a cast. The series features several SAG actors, including star Jonathan Roumie who plays Jesus.
A recent Instagram post from creator Dallas Jenkins implored SAG for an exemption: “We immediately submitted all requested documents. We meet all the qualifications for an exemption. Every day that passes without your response is costing us hundreds of thousands of dollars while your actors are stuck in Utah. We are the good guys. We treated your actors well.
The chosen becomes the first known television series to benefit from an exemption. It is widely expected that waivers will largely apply to independent films, since most American series are made with a studio.
Agreements are granted to “truly independent producers” so long as they are not affiliated with the Alliance of Film and Television Producers and agree to be bound retroactively to any contractual terms that may be entered into with the AMPTP when the strike is settled.
But the SAG’s path to granting exemptions is not straightforward. Even in the case of The chosen, the series recently announced a sales license agreement with Lionsgate and previous seasons have been sold to CW, Netflix, Amazon and Peacock. As far as we know, these offers only apply to seasons one through three, not season four (although last season’s budget may have benefited from these offers). The series is distributed in the United States by Angel Studios, which recently struck gold at the box office with sound of freedom.
We reached out to Jenkins, the producers, and SAG for details on how the waiver was obtained.
The chosen certainly has indie roots given that it’s widely regarded as one of the most successful crowdfunded television series of all time. According to a Wall Street Journal profile, two years ago viewers had already contributed $40 million to its production. New episodes are released for free on the show’s website and app, and are then made available through platforms. Out Of Order Studios, based in Texas, produces.
The historical drama tells the story of Jesus through the eyes of those who knew him, retracing his teachings and “miracles” as he embarks on his ministry to change the world.
We announced yesterday the news of the first interim agreements being granted by SAG, some of the terms and some of the questions that still exist around the process.
The first movie believed to have gotten a tentative deal is Simon West’s upcoming action-comedy married hardwhich should feature Rebel Wilson.