Who is vandalizing "The Chosen" billboards?
Angel Studios, the company behind the hit Christian streaming series about the life of Jesus, “The Chosen,” unveiled a satirical promotion ahead of Easter showing that many of its billboards had been vandalized.
Earlier this week, 48 of the 70 billboards across the United States promoting “The Chosen” were defaced with graffiti. Some billboard ads now feature funny doodles over faces and a link to the website “chosensux.com.”
On the webpage, accessed by The Christian Post on Thursday, there was a link to the app that runs the series and a link to a YouTube video titled “Stop watching The Chosen... it is not good.”
The lighthearted video features the devil leading a class of demons in which he calls “The Chosen” a “high quality" series that he needs to try to “discredit” and “shut down.”
Jeremiah Smith, who oversees creative and marketing for “The Chosen,” told CP in an interview Thursday that the billboard and satirical video were aimed at reaching those who haven't been watching the program.
“We feel like there are a lot of people who have maybe heard about the show, had someone recommend it to them, or just would be interested in who Jesus is, but might not go to church or might not be interested in faith-based media at all,” he explained.
“So by taking this approach, what we wanted to do is really aim squarely at that target audience and say, ‘Hey, you know, we’re a little different. This show is different.’ And so, in order to do that, we needed to grab attention and we thought satire was the best way to do it.”
The introduction of the billboards with the fake vandalism caused a fair amount of confusion, with some believing that the defacing was a genuine criminal act rather than a joke.
When asked by CP about how some have found the campaign to be in poor taste, Smith responded that “we expected some of that,” but noted that the vast majority of feedback has been positive.
“This is something that people really love. They love this show. And so, we have a fan base that’s passionate about it. The show is fan-supported,” said Smith. “We knew that some of them, first of all, probably wouldn’t understand the joke.
“What we could have done a better job of upfront, was letting them know, ‘Hey, we’re about to do this campaign, we want you guys on board for it.’ So we waited too long to tell them that. And so, there was an initial, ‘Wait! What is going on here?’”
Produced by Angel Studios and available on their streaming platform, “The Chosen” debuted in December 2019 and has two seasons, totaling 16 episodes. According to Smith, the series has already garnered approximately 350 million views.