Jesus Film Project celebrates 1,500th language translation of most watched movie in history

(YouTube/Jesus Film Project)A screen capture from the trailer of the movie "JESUS."

The Jesus Film Project is celebrating the 1,500th language translation of the movie "JESUS," which holds the record for being the most-watched film in history.

The latest translation into Daasanach, which is spoken by an ethnic group inhabiting parts of Ethiopia, Kenya and Sudan, is part of the initiative known as Mission 865. The goal of the initiative is to reach the remaining 865 language groups with 50,000 or more speakers representing millions who have not heard the Gospel, according to Christian Newswire.

"The completion of the 1,500th language translation of 'JESUS' is an incredible milestone," said Josh Newell, the project's Director of Marketing and Communications.

"This marks a critical advancement in reaching those who have never heard the gospel. 'JESUS' has long been one of the most effective ways to reach people in a way they can immediately understand the message of salvation, and now our reach can go even further," he added.

After the film was shown in about 2,000 U.S. theaters in 1979, The Jesus Film Project began translating it into other languages. The film has since been used to make 7.5 billion Gospel presentations across 230 countries, with over 490 million indicating decisions to follow Christ after watching it.

Newell said that the movie has been retouched and repackaged several times. In the late 1990s, the team began the efforts to adapt the film for different audiences, which involved reshooting some scenes or making adaptations, such as adding in narration for children.

The Jesus Film Project has also made the film available in different formats, including VHS, DVD, Blu-ray and downloadable content.

The movie, which is based on the Gospel of Luke, was initiated by the late Bill Bright, co-founder of Campus Crusade for Christ, in cooperation with The Genesis Project. Bright's vision of showing the movie to people in every country is being carried out by The Jesus Film Project.

The project also offers additional tools such as "The Story of JESUS for Children" and "Magdalena," a film highlighting Jesus' ministry toward women.

"It is fantastic to see the work that we have done is being used and multiplied by so many," said Newell. "As we continue to provide excellent tools for ministry use, it will be incredible to see the numbers grow in the next decade," he added.

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