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Jesus Family Tomb In the News

Candid Interview with Jesus Family Tomb Filmmaker

While critics continue to condemn his film The Lost Tomb of Jesus, Simcha Jacobovici took time to reflect on the debate surrounding in his film. In a candid interview with Jerusalem Post’s Ruthie Blum, the Israeli-born Canadian responded to the explosion of discussion and criticism made on his theory that a cluster of ossuaries originally excavated 27 years ago in Israel contained the bones of Jesus and his family.

“I welcome the debate,” the 54-year old filmmaker revealed during the interview. “That’s what I wanted. We’ve gathered enough information and evidence to spark that debate.”

Jacobovici is the recipient of two Emmy awards, one for The Selling of Innocents, about the sex trafficking of children and The Plague of Monkeys, about the Ebola virus. He has also covered on film topics such as the Ethiopian Jews, Jesus’ brother James, terrorism, the lost tribes of Israel, and the sinking of the Struma refugee ship. The Exodus Decoded, his latest film, examines whether the biblical exodus of the Jews was, in his words, “history or fairy tale” and is set to be broadcast in Israel during Passover. Debate over his Jesus family tomb film has been so strong that some groups, particularly in the United States, have tried to prevent The Lost Tomb of Jesus from being aired again.

But Jacobovici is no stranger to debate. His journalistic pieces on the plight of the Ethiopian Jews, which appeared in the New York Times, drew a maelstrom of controversy and went on to become the subject of his first film in 1981. The topic, he states, is similar to that which is currently the focus of his research: the original Jesus movement, a movement Jacobovici feels was abandoned by both Judaism and Christianity. “If you're looking for common denominators in my life, I guess I would say that Ethiopian Jews - like the original Jesus movement I am now interested in - fell between the cracks.”

One criticism that Jacobovici has faced with The Lost Tomb of Jesus, which was produced by director James Cameron, is his academic background, which does not include a degree in archaeology. “There have been a lot of academics saying I’m not an archeologist, which is absolutely true,” responds Jacobovici, who attended McGill University, where he completed a BA in philosophy and political science. He then went on to complete an MA in international relations at the University of Toronto. “My job, as it would be if I were doing any story, is to connect dots and see if a picture emerges.”

The filmmaker also dismisses criticism that the names found on the first-century ossuaries were common during Jesus’ time, a view which he can nevertheless understand. “When I heard how common it was, I thought that every other ossuary would have a "Jesus son of Joseph" written on it. But only one other one was found in an archeological context. But, even if it were common, the cluster isn't common at all.”

In addition to his work on the Jesus family tomb, Jacobovici is also host of the hit documentary series The Naked Archeologist, which unravels Biblical archaeological mysteries.

All in all, the distinguished filmmaker hopes that The Lost Tomb of Jesus will continue to foster discussion and bring to light a new perspective on Jesus and his followers. “This tomb controversy could lead to a new examination of the historical Jesus movement: What did they stand for? Who were they? What did they believe?”
Source: Jerusalem Post

In The News Archive

Experts Remain Divided Over Jesus Tomb Find01/24/2008
Jacobovici Welcomes Continued Debate on Tomb Find05/30/2007
Experts Dig for the Truth05/23/2007
Tabor to Host Jesus Tomb Seminar05/07/2007
Jesus Tomb Director Encourages Further Investigation05/01/2007
Jacobovici: No Scholars Backtracked on Jesus Film04/24/2007
Jesus Tomb Director Takes Time to Reflect Amidst Controversy04/24/2007
Radio Discussion Supports Jesus Tomb Find04/12/2007
Jesus Tomb Scholars Retrace Their Steps04/11/2007
Church to Hold Discussion on Jesus Tomb Find04/09/2007
Seminar to Examine the Lost Tomb of Jesus04/04/2007
Most Non-Born-Again Christians Still Believe in Physical Resurrection, Study Finds04/03/2007
Opinions on Jesus Tomb Linked to Views of Resurrection03/31/2007
Tomb An Opportunity to Discuss the Life of Jesus, Pastor Says03/30/2007
Scholars Propose Alternative Theories About Jesus Family Tomb03/26/2007
Candid Interview with Jesus Family Tomb Filmmaker03/21/2007
Tomb Find Raises Questions, Criticism03/19/2007
Scholar Rejects Jesus Tomb Find03/16/2007
Fresh Criticism of Jesus Family Tomb03/16/2007
Jesus Family Tomb Statistics Don’t Add Up, Experts Say03/15/2007
Jerusalem Bishop: Jesus Tomb Film Misleading03/09/2007
Christian Leaders Weigh In on Jesus Family Tomb Discovery03/07/2007
Experts Weigh in on Jesus Tomb Find03/02/2007
Israel Authorities May Open Talpiot Tomb to the Public02/27/2007
Jacobovici and Cameron Defend Claims02/26/2007

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