BEVERLY HILLS — During a recent interview for Sony Pictures Animation's Christmas film, "The Star," actress Gina Rodriguez said she believes God put this role in her path just as He did with her hit TV series, "Jane the Virgin."
"If we're going to talk about faith, I definitely believe God put all of this in my path," Rodriguez told The Christian Post. "Because to be able to play Jane the Virgin and then to have this opportunity."
Rodriguez' role in "Jane the Virgin" draws from the biblical storyline of the immaculate conception and the virtue of saving one's virginity for marriage with a twist so that it can reach the telenovela audience. Although it's not a Christian show, the actress said she sees a pattern in the roles God has given her to play.
Commenting on her latest film role, the 33-year-old Chicago native said, "Playing the role was incredible! It's truly an honor, it's definitely a blessing, and it was a lot of fun. It's rich in love and joy and happiness and faith and I get to have my nieces and nephews in the theater. There's just too many blessings to count in this one."
"The Star" hits theaters nationwide on Nov. 17. the film is the first faith-based animated film since 1998's "Prince of Egypt." It tells the story of the first Christmas through the perspective of the animals that traveled with Mary and Joseph to Bethlehem and witnessed Jesus' birth.
Although "The Star" is an animated film, the family-friendly film can be enjoyed by both kids and adults alike.
There's a quote in the film that gives Rodriguez chills — "Just because God has a plan doesn't mean it's going to be easy."
"I live my life that way, I'm very aware that life is difficult and it isn't going to be easy and there's something in my heart that revels in those moments to see the triumph that I can bring in those difficult times," the Golden Globe winner stated.
As seen by the predominately female cast in her hit show "Jane the Virgin," Rodriguez is big on celebrating women and says "The Star" shows Mary in all her strength.
"Mary, in nativity stories, is seldom portrayed as a woman of strength and power," Rodriguez pointed out. "What's beautiful about being a millennial in this day and age, is that we are finally celebrating the strength of women, and we're coming together and we're making sure that women are uplifted and women are recognized for their strength and their power in this world and how much we contribute to this world."
"As much as it is intimidating to play the Virgin Mary, seldom are we told how strong Mary is, and so finally we are!" Rodriguez concluded.
The movie offers many timely lessons and Bo's (the donkey) quest for a greater purpose will inspire many. The telling of the birth of the King of Kings will also serve as a reminder for viewers in the midst of much unrest in the world, that Jesus is still the hope of the world.
"The Star" was directed by Academy Award-nominated writer/director Tim Reckart ("Head Over Heels") and produced by DeVon Franklin ("Miracles From Heaven").
Along with Rodriguez playing Mary (mother of Jesus), "The Star" features Steven Yeun ("The Walking Dead") as Bo the donkey, singer Kelly Clarkson as Leah the horse, Anthony Anderson as Zach the goat, comedian Gabriel Iglesias as Rufus the dog, Kris Kristofferson as the Old Donkey, Zachary Levi as Joseph, Oprah Winfrey as Deborah, Tyler Perry as Cyrus and Tracy Morgan as Felix.
For more information about the film, click here.