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Carole Mikita Reporting A new movie about the life of Joseph Smith, the man Latter-day Saints call their founding prophet, is about to open.
This film is a long-time dream of President Gordon B. Hinckley, who oversaw its production. Utahns can see it at the Legacy Theatre in the Joseph Smith Memorial Building, starting tomorrow.
T.C. Christensen, Co-director & Cinematographer: "President Hinckley had been dreaming about this project for about 20 years, so for us to try to meet his expectations was, first of all, very difficult."
Then came the challenge of portraying the Prophet Joseph Smith. The actor says he was very much aware of film-goers preconceived notions about him and events in his life.
Nathan Mitchell, Actor Portraying Joseph Smith: "I always had that doubt in the back of my mind, might somebody say, 'That's not the way I imaged it.' I had to sort of sort those feelings out."
The feelings of love, devotion and shared faith between Joseph and Emma Smith comes out very clearly in the film. The actress playing Emma says there's a clear message in that.
Katherine Thompson, Actress Portraying Emma Smith: "Joseph would not put up with people slanting his wife in any way. I think it's important that we respect that and come to learn more about her life."
Church leaders believe it will have appeal outside the faith because beginning December 24th, the film will also run at church sites from New Zealand to Washington, D.C.
Elder Keith K. Hilbig, Exec. Dir. LDS Church Audiovisual Dept.: "Since this film will be in all of the visitors' centers and church historic sites around the country, it won't be necessary for people to come to Salt Lake to see it. So we anticipate there will be a very broad exposure to the film."
The movie will run every hour and a half Mondays through Saturdays starting a 9 am. There is a limit of 10 tickets per person.