‘The Chosen’ Breaks Record for Most-Translated TV Show

The popular series about Jesus is now available in 50 languages with plans for 550 more.

The film was familiar but the language was new for Come and See CEO Stan Jantz.

As he sat in a theater in Warsaw, he looked around the room and saw people laughing and crying in the same places he had laughed and cried when he watched The Chosen, the popular streaming series that tells the story of Jesus through the eyes of the disciples. That was the moment of truth for Jantz. The real test for a translation—going beyond accuracy alone—is whether it connects with human hearts.

“Translation also has to be beautiful,” Jantz told CT. “It’s an art as much as it is a science.”

Come and See has dubbed or subtitled The Chosen into 50 languages so far. The group has plans to do the same for 550 more languages.

No TV show has ever been translated into that many languages. Few shows are dubbed more than a handful of times, even in an era where viewership of translated programs has dramatically increased, thanks to streaming services’ global business plans. Netflix can dub shows into about three dozen languages but mostly works in French, German, Polish, Italian, Turkish, Castilian Spanish, Latin American Spanish, and Brazilian Portuguese. Some very popular shows are remade in another language, like Suits, which has Japanese, Korean, and Mongolian versions.

Baywatch, starring David Hasselhoff and Pamela Anderson, has been translated 34 times. That was the record, until Come and See started turning out dubbed versions of The Chosen.

There’s not a lot of profit in dubbing, so for-profit efforts will only go so far. A nonprofit like Come and See can do more.

The group wants to reach 1 billion people with the show, so The Chosen can connect people to Jesus and bring them to faith. Come and …

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