In the lead-up to the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, for the first time church groups will be able to stage public screenings of the acclaimed 2003 film Luther.
As a community engagement project backed by its 50.500 initiative, the LCA has negotiated distribution rights for Australia and New Zealand to make the DVD available for single-use public screenings of the movie, provided these are free to the public. (However, the congregation, aged-care facility or other group is permitted to charge those who attend the screening for supper or drinks, for example.)
For $55, church congregations, facilities or agencies receives a single–use, non–theatrical screening right for their congregation or facility. They will also receive a copy of the DVD, access to posters and promotional images, and a guide for using the DVD to connect with their local community. Due to copyright laws, it is illegal to buy a Luther DVD and show it in a worship service or at other public events, without buying the licence for a non-theatrical screening right. However, DVDs can be used for private viewing without breaking the law.
Luther, the film, tells the epic story of the man considered by many historians to be one of the most important people in the past 1000 years. It transports viewers to an extraordinary era – the 16th century. It was the time that saw the emergence of the modern age. Gutenberg’s printing press transformed society, Copernicus showed that the earth revolved around the sun and Luther’s work was the catalyst for fundamental social, political, and religious changes that still impact our world view today.
The film is billed as a warts-and-all biopic, depicting Luther’s doubts, his searching, his struggles, his victories, and his defeats.
Luther features a stellar cast, including Joseph Fiennes (Shakespeare in Love and Risen) as Luther, Alfred Molina (Chocolat and Raiders of the Lost Ark) as monk John Tetzel, Sir Peter Ustinov (Spartacus and Quo Vadis) as Frederick the Wise, Claire Cox as Luther’s wife Katharina von Bora, Uwe Ochsenknecht as Pope Leo X and Lars Rudolph as Luther’s friend Philipp Melanchthon.
More information and orders will be available this month (June) through the 50.500 website at http://50500.lca.org.au/ and the DVDs will be available from July.