When movies are made based on a true story, it doesn't mean that everything in the movie is depicted exactly as it happened. Often, creative license fills in gaps by adding to the original for various reasons. For biblically-based movies such as "Noah" and "Son of God" and even old classics like the "Ten Commandments," this has been the case. But today's critics are much louder and persistent when the story line veers from the original. The Wire reports in a February 28 article that as a result of the controversy surrounding the Noah movie a disclaimer that "The film is inspired by the story of Noah" and that "artistic license has been taken" has been added.
Disclaimer added to Noah movie marketing materials
Darren Aronofsky's upcoming Noah movie is due to be released on March 28. The movie has been caught up in controversy over the theological themes depicted in his rendition of the story of Noah. As a result an explanatory message has been added to Paramount Pictures marketing materials designed to ease the controversy by letting viewers know ahead of time that the story in the movie won't match up 100% with the true account found in the book of Genesis. The disclaimer can now be found on the movie's official website, all the print and radio spots, as well as on the upcoming online trailer.
“The film is inspired by the story of Noah. While artistic license has been taken, we believe that this film is true to the essence, values, and integrity of a story that is a cornerstone of faith for millions of people worldwide. The biblical story of Noah can be found in the book of Genesis.” – Noah Movie's official website
The disclaimer resulted following a discussion of how closely the movie "Noah" adheres to the scriptural account at the NRB International Christian Media Convention. A panel moderated by National Religious Broadcasters CEO Jerry Johnson included Hollywood filmmaker and media consultant Phil Cooke and John Snowden (biblical adviser for the “Noah” film). In the end, Dr. Jerry A. Johnson called for such a disclaimer to help “audiences better understand that the feature film is a dramatization of the major scriptural themes and not a line-by-line retelling of the Bible story.” (Press release National Religious Broadcasters)
Noah not only biblical movie to take creative license
The Noah movie is not the first biblically-based film to take such artistic liberties. In fact, the "Son of God" which opened in theaters on February 28, has done the same and it was well received. While all these movies are entertaining, they should not be expected to be a word-for-word drama of the biblical account.