A press release from the History Channel said:
"The Bible" miniseries debuted to 13.1 million viewers in its 8-10 p.m. premiere, making it the most-watched cable entertainment telecast of the year."
"We've been working on this project for the past four years now and are deeply honored to be given this once-in-a-generation opportunity to breathe new visual life into the Bible's profound stories. The Bible gives meaning and purpose to billions of people around the world. We believe the success of the series will spark the curiosity of billions more."
The 10-hour series premiered on Sunday, March 3 for two hours. Its fifth and final episode will be on Easter Sunday night.
"The Bible" covers the text from Genesis to Revelation, including such stories as Noah's Ark, Daniel in the Lion's Den and the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus. Downey is not only co-producer, but she also plays Mary, the mother of Jesus in a New Testament episode. She is accustomed to acting. We remember she played the role of "Monica" in "Touched by an Angel."
Burnett and Downey summarized their feelings in a press release:
“We could not be more thrilled with this out of the gate success of "The Bible" on History. The world is watching right now and we are incredibly humbled by the reaction to the series."
The second installment of "The Bible" series airs Sunday, March 10 from 8-10 p.m. on the History Channel.
To view clips and to order DVDs, go to "The Bible" series' official website.