Spreading the Gospel through cinema – Hope Studios launched at Hope Channel International
Jun 22, 2023, 3:53 PM
Hope Channel International (HCI) is excited to announce the activity of its newest evangelistic department, Hope Studios, which has been created to develop cinematic content for streaming platforms, cinemas, and new evangelistic-oriented channels.
“Hope Studios is one more creative platform in our global evangelistic media network to share messages of hope with those who have never heard the life-changing Gospel of Jesus Christ,” said the President of HCI, Derek Morris.
HERITAGE OF STORYTELLING
The conception of Hope Studios centered around its core purpose of inspiring and uplifting viewers with stories that resonate with the resilience and strength of the human spirit that result from a connection with our Creator.
“Hope Studios is set to become more intentional in reaching the unreached beyond television. Our mission is to proclaim the prophetic message entrusted to us as Adventists. We aim to reach people from all walks of life, regardless of their geographical location, by producing impactful films and documentaries that convey this message to a global audience,” expressed HCI Vice President for Programming, Vyacheslav Demyan.
Director of Hope Studios, Kevin Christenson, noted, “As an Adventist creative myself, I’m excited to see our church return to its heritage of storytelling to reach audiences that would not normally watch a sermon, listen to a religious podcast, or watch pastors on television. Thanks to the combined support of church leaders and the generous donors of Hope Channel International, we can accomplish this mission. Our church has always been innovative; beginning with the printing press, expanding into radio and television, and now into streaming and cinematic storytelling.”
HOPE STUDIOS INITIATIVES
Hope Studios serves the network in several capacities, such as supporting the creation of new cinematic content including narrative films, documentaries, and series - all with the goal of third-party distribution (non-Adventist streaming platforms, channels, and venues). The department also serves as a liaison on behalf of HCl to external studios. Recently, Hope Studios negotiated with Angel Studios to bring Season 1 of The Chosen, the first-ever multi-season series about the life of Christ, to all Hope Channels worldwide. In addition, Hope Studios negotiated the licensing to use copyrighted clips of the show in Hope Channel International’s television distribution series Story Encounters: The Chosen.
Further, it takes Adventist-produced content to third-party platforms. Recently, Hope Media EUD, along with support from Sonscreen (NAD), placed a lot of resources, effort, and creativity into producing the high-quality film series, Encounters. Following its completion, Hope Studios was able to negotiate with Sony’s platform Pure Flix to bring Encounters to this streaming platform. Through this endeavor, this series was exposed to a much broader audience with Pure Flix’s 1 million subscribers. Hope Media EUD received positive feedback from Pure Flix viewers within the first week of its release and their executive team is anticipating more high-quality content from Hope.
Vice President Demyan emphasized HCI’s appreciation for prayers and financial support for this new initiative.
“Because of our supporters, we are able to start this new era of growth in our efforts to bring the Gospel to the ends of the world and to reach people where they are,” he stated.
Demyan further noted that “In the book Evangelism, Ellen White says, ‘Let every worker in the Master's vineyard, study, plan, devise methods, to reach the people where they are. We must do something out of the common course of things. We must arrest the attention. We must be deadly in earnest. We are on the very verge of times of trouble and perplexities that are scarcely dreamed of’ (Evangelism 122.4). Jesus is coming soon!”
Christenson added, “We want to empower every Adventist - from kids to teens to adults - to be proud to share their faith with friends and neighbors that may not be watching traditional TV by using high-quality films and movies ‘arresting their attention’ for Christ.”
COMMITMENT TO CONTENT PRODUCTION
On April 20, 2023, the services of Hope Studios were announced at the Hope Channel Network Leadership Conference (NLC) in Johannesburg, South Africa. Several attendees expressed excitement about this new development while others returned to their countries with a renewed commitment to begin producing more films.
One of the world leaders who was present that day was the director of Hope Channel India, Swamidass Johnson. “1.4 billion people who speak more than 4,000 different languages in India enjoy watching TV series and movies. So, we started seeking opportunities to get started in the film production industry. However, we are so far unable to do so. Then, the Hope Studios presentation at NLC inspired us to keep looking for production avenues. After much effort, we are excited to release a 3D Storyboard Animation based on Daniel 2 to attract young people and children,” Johnson said.
Hope Studios also understands the need for representation and pertinence in media production.
"With the opportunity to reach larger audiences with the gospel, it became clear to me that there is an even greater need for quality, relevant Christian content,” said Senior Producer at Hope Studios, Rico Hill.
“Streaming platforms have changed the distribution game for contact providers to reach the world in new and creative ways. So, the idea of launching Hope Studios, a more cinematic arm for our network that could seek out, develop, and distribute next-level Christian content, just made sense and got me excited. I saw this as a chance to be a part of pioneering the next generation of Christian media," he added.
As Hope Channel International strives to reach new heights in the Christian media production industry, it invites all to take part in this push to spread the Gospel. To become a part of this exciting new initiative, find films and series at HopeStudios.org and share them with your sphere of influence. Become an Impact Partner of Hope Channel International today by visiting hopetv.org/giving and by supporting us with your prayers and gifts.
Share God's good news for a better life today and for eternity with millions of people around the world by supporting the Hope Channel ministry.
About Hope Channel
Hope Channel International Inc. (HCI) is a Christian global media network that offers programs on Christian living with a holistic focus on faith, health, relationships, and community. Hope Channel began broadcasting in North America in 2003. Today Hope Channel is a global network with more than 80 channels broadcasting in over 80 languages.
For additional information, contact:
Hope Channel International at email@example.com or 888-446-7388
Marketing Department at (301) 680-6689