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SINGER/SONGWRITER JENCARLOS CANELA CAST AS JESUS CHRIST AND MULTI-PLATINUM RECORDING ARTIST CHRIS DAUGHTRY TO PLAY THE DISCIPLE JUDAS IN "THE PASSION"
Inspirational Live Television Event Airs Palm Sunday, March 20, on FOX
Singer/songwriter and actor Jencarlos Canela has been cast in the role of Jesus Christ in THE PASSION, a two-hour epic musical event airing LIVE from New Orleans on Palm Sunday, March 20 (8:00-10:00 PM ET live/PT tape-delayed) on FOX. Also, singer and actor Chris Daughtry has been tapped to play the disciple Judas. Canela and Daughtry join previously announced host and narrator Tyler Perry and cast members Prince Royce (the disciple Peter) and Trisha Yearwood (Mary, the mother of Jesus).
THE PASSION, written by Peter Barsocchini ("High School Musical"), tells the 2000-year-old story of the last hours of Jesus Christ's life on earth through passages from the Bible and a variety of popular music, sung by the cast, and arranged specifically for this event by executive producer and hit music producer Adam Anders ("Glee," "Rock of Ages"). Set in modern day, the event will follow the dramatic and inspirational story of Jesus of Nazareth, as he presides over the Last Supper, and then is betrayed by Judas, put on trial by Pontius Pilate, convicted, crucified and resurrected.
The event will unfold live at some of New Orleans' most iconic locations, while featuring a procession of hundreds of people carrying a 20-foot, illuminated cross from outside the Superdome to the live stage at Woldenberg Park on the banks of the Mississippi River.
Born and raised in Miami, Jencarlos Canela has starred in multiple TV productions, collaborated with some of the most prestigious musical talents of his time and performed over 200 concerts worldwide. Canela debuted as a theater actor and singer in the 2008 stage musical "Miami Libre" at the Arsht Center for the Performing Arts. His first TV role was in the soap opera "Pecados Ajenos" and soon after, he joined the panel of judges for the popular reality show "Nuestra Belleza Latina." Canela currently stars in the new comedy series "Telenovela." On the music front, Canela has collaborated with the likes of Grammy Award-winning songwriter Emilio Estefan, Latin Grammy Award-winning producer Rudy Perez and performing artist Pitbull, among others. His 2009 debut album, "Buscame," entered the Latin album charts at No. 1 and was certified Gold within weeks of its release. In 2013, Canela was signed as an exclusive artist by Universal Music Records and he released his third and most recent album, "JEN," in 2014. He is currently in the studio working on his English album debut for Republic Records.
Chris Daughtry is best known as a multi-Platinum artist who emerged from Season Five of AMERICAN IDOL, on which he placed fourth. His eponymously named band has sold more than eight million albums and 16 million singles worldwide, and has been selling out concert venues around the world for almost 10 years. The band has won four American Music Awards, three People's Choice Awards and has been nominated for four Grammy Awards. At radio, the band has earned four No. 1 singles, including the multi-format No. 1 one song "It's Not Over." Daughtry also is an actor, comic book artist and philanthropist. He has appeared in "CSI: NY," "Riggle's Picks" and skits for Funny or Die. Alongside DC Comics co-publisher Jim Lee, Daughtry has been commissioned to pencil the variant cover for "Batman" #50, as part of the promotion for the upcoming release of "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice." His prolific philanthropic pursuits raise tens of thousands of dollars annually for the likes of the USO, Make a Wish Foundation, Alzheimer's Association, Musicians on Call and Save The Music Foundation.
THE PASSION is produced by dick clark productions. Allen Shapiro (CEO, dick clark productions), Mike Mahan (President, dick clark productions), Mark Bracco (Executive Vice President, Programming and Development, dick clark productions), Jacco Doornbos (CEO and Creative Director of Eye2Eye Media), Adam Anders (CEO, Anders Media Inc.) and David Grifhorst ("The Passion: Netherlands") will serve as executive producers. Robert Deaton ("CMA Awards") also will serve as executive producer and showrunner.
Like THE PASSION on Facebook at facebook.com/FOXTV. Follow the event on Twitter @FOXTV, and join the discussion using #ThePassionLive. See photos and videos on Instagram @FOXTV/.
About dick clark productions
dick clark productions (dcp) is the world's largest producer and proprietor of televised live event entertainment programming, with the "Academy of Country Music Awards," AMERICAN COUNTRY COUNTDOWN AWARDS, "American Music Awards," "Billboard Music Awards," "Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve with Ryan Seacrest," "Golden Globe Awards," "Hollywood Film Awards" and the "Streamy Awards." Weekly television programming includes SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE, from 19 Entertainment, a division of CORE Media Group and dcp; and WORLD'S FUNNIEST, from Jukin Media and dcp. dcp also owns one of the world's most unique and extensive entertainment archive libraries, with more than 55 years of award-winning shows, historic programs, specials, performances and legendary programming. For additional information, visit www.dickclark.com.
About Eye2Eye Media
Jacco Doornbos is CEO and Creative Director of Eye2Eye Media, a content-driven international television and cross-media company based in The Netherlands. Eye2Eye Media has created and produced award-winning scripted and live television events and series formats since the company's inception in 1998. Its show, "The Passion," is Holland's highest-rated live musical television event annually since 2011 and was awarded the prestigious Dutch TV Statue for best entertainment program in 2014. As creator of "The Passion," Doornbos earned the esteemed J.B.Th Spaan Prize, an award given to one media professional for his or her innovative work every other year. Some of Eye2Eye Media's other live television event successes include the annual National Christmas Celebration in Amsterdam, "Miss Ability" and the "National Bible Quiz." Its most successful scripted series include "In Search of God," "Expedition Unlimited," "Daddy's First Steps" and "McDonald's Kitchen." Eye2Eye Media formats, documentaries and series have been sold to many territories, including the U.S, U.K, Germany, France, Italy, Denmark, Austria, Belgium, Poland and Australia.
About Anders Media Inc.
Anders Media Inc. was founded in 2012 by Adam Anders and Nikki Anders with the sole purpose of developing and producing music-driven content for TV and film. With more Billboard Hot 100 singles chart entries than any producer in history (217), Adam Anders has sold more than 100 million albums worldwide and created the music for some of the most successful major motion pictures and television shows in entertainment today. His songs have broken music chart records and his work has earned him four Grammy Award nominations, two People's Choice Awards and an ARIA Award. Anders' music has been heard in movies and television shows, including "Glee," "High School Musical 3," "The Young Victoria," "Cheetah Girls 3," "Evan Almighty," "The Wedding Planner," "Rugrats In Paris," "Camp Rock," "Camp Rock 2," "Hannah Montana" and "Starstruck," among many others. He also holds the distinction of having the most singles charting on the Billboard Hot 100 chart of any producer in history. He served as executive music producer for FOX's hit series, "Glee," as well as the feature film and soundtrack for "Rock Of Ages," a project whose original score is by Anders and Peer Astrom, with all songs produced by Anders and Peer Astrom. Anders has established an unparalleled track record of writing and producing some of the world's most popular songs for both established and developing artists, such as Cee-Lo Green, Tori Kelly, Jonas Brothers, Selena Gomez, Miley Cyrus, Demi Lovato, Backstreet Boys, Clay Aiken, Sheryl Crow, Steven Curtis Chapman, CeCe Winans, Nick Lachey and Ashley Tisdale, among others. Recently, Anders Media Inc. signed an exclusive worldwide agreement with Capitol Music Group to establish their own Deep Well Records as an associated label of Virgin Records, based out of the iconic Capitol Tower in Hollywood.