Angelina Jolie and company left out most of Louis Zamperini’s Christian epiphany in Unbroken (our review), but in a brilliant stroke of marketing chutzpah, The Hollywood Reporter reports that Universal is releasing a special edition DVD aimed at the same Christians they ignored when they made it.
The home video release is set for Tuesday at all the usual outlets, but a special “Legacy of Faith” edition includes both the movie and 90 minutes extra material that focuses on Zamperini’s life after his near-death experiences in a rickety lifeboat and at a brutal Japanese prison camp during World War II. Universal has taken the unusual step of making the “Legacy of Faith” version available only at Christian outlets.
Yep, they’re selling it only at Christian stores. Faith may be about bringing people together, but capitalism requires dividing people into demos for easy marketing.
Universal Pictures Home Entertainment seems to have largely outsourced the marketing and distribution of the product and wasn’t available for comment. It partnered with Pure Flix, which will distribute the “Legacy of Faith” version of the home video through Family Christian Stores, Mardel Christian Stores, Parable Christian Stores and ChristianBook.com. Faith Driven Entertainment is handling much of the publicity.
Pure Flix, if you’ll remember, is the same company behind the recent release of Do You Believe?, the faith-based, Crash-type movie starring Brian Bosworth, Ted McGinley, and Sean Astin (check the link, I’m not making that up). That one didn’t do so hot in its opening weekend last weekend, but selling Christian DVDs is more Pure Flix’s bag anyway.
“I loved the movie. It was beautiful and brutal at the same time. Angie got all the scenes right,” Zamperini’s son, Luke Zamperini, tells The Hollywood Reporter. “But the biggest criticism we got was from people in the faith-based community who read the book and said, ‘Well, it left out the whole Billy Graham scene.’ ”
The “Legacy of Faith” disc includes a description of what happened that day and the next, and shows lots of footage of Graham and Zamperini together in the 1950s, as the two became good friends. [THR]
Well, my biggest criticism about the movie was that Louis Zamperini was a lovable scamp in the book, and the movie turned him into an empty vessel who gets beat up a lot (also, they didn’t teach their “Italian” lead how to pronounce “gnocchi”). Where was the part where Louis met Hitler and almost got shot for stealing a Nazi flag? I’m hoping Universal releases a special version with footage of that, but I’m not sure I want to go into a Nazi store to find it.