The Nativity Story Premieres in the Vatican

New Line Cinema's "The Nativity Story" will debut this Sunday at the Vatican.

The new film version of the Christmas story will open in theatres worldwide on December 1.

The premiere will be attended by The Nativity Story's director Catherine Hardwicke, actors Shohreh Aghdashloo and Oscar Isaac, producers Marty Bowen and Wyck Godfrey, screenwriter Mike Rich, and 7,000 invited guests of the Vatican.

Oscar Isaac, who plays Joseph, shared that one of the most difficult scenes for him as an actor was when Joseph first learns that Mary has become pregnant.

He believes that only Joseph's deep love for Mary, and for God, gave him the strength and assurance to take her as his wife despite what the movie depicts as shunning by their neighbors.

The event will serve as a benefit, with contributions going towards the construction of a school in the village of Mughar, Israel.

"We are very proud of The Nativity Story and extremely grateful that the Vatican has embraced the film in this way," says New Line's President and CEO of Worldwide Distribution and Marketing Rolf Mittweg. "We believe it is the perfect venue to present the film's universal message of hope and faith, a message we are sure will resonate around the world."

The event has been made possible due to the collaboration of the Pontifical Council for Culture, the Pontifical Council for Social Communication, the Vatican Film Library, the Pontifical Council "Cor Unum" (for Human and Christian Development), the Vicariate of Vatican City State, and the Foundation for Sacred Art and Music.

The Nativity Story chronicles the arduous journey of Mary and Joseph, a miraculous pregnancy, and the history-defining birth of Jesus. This dramatic and compelling story comes to life in a major motion picture starring Academy Award® nominee Keisha Castle-Hughes (Whale Rider) as Mary, Oscar Isaac (upcoming Guerrilla) as Joseph, and Academy Award® nominee Shoreh Aghdashloo (House of Sand and Fog) as Elizabeth, the mother of John the Baptist.

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