The latest installment of “The Left Behind” franchise, “Left Behind: Rise of the Antichrist,” opened in theaters nationwide on Jan. 26, and to Hollywood’s surprise, surpassed the $3 million mark at the box office.
The Christian film exceeded box office expectations and finished seventh overall at the box office over the weekend. By maintaining top per-screen averages each night, the film’s release was extended to run in theaters for additional dates.
“The reaction to this film has been overwhelming,” actor and director Kevin Sorbo said in a statement shared with The Christian Post.
“After millions of people vanish and the world falls into chaos, the only light is a charismatic leader who rises to become head of the U.N. But does he bring hope for a better future? Or is it the end of the world?” the synopsis reads.
“Left Behind: Rise of the Antichrist” stars Sorbo (“God’s Not Dead”), Neal McDonough (“Arrow”), Corbin Bernsen (“The Resident”) and Bailey Chase (“Saving Grace”).
Directed by “The Legends of Hercules” star Sorbo and written by Paul Lalonde, John Patus and Jessica Parker, the film is the next chapter of content based on the New York Times bestselling book series Left Behind. The new installment serves as an updated storyline from the 2014 movie starring Nicolas Cage.
The latest release hopes to show how current events set the stage for the “return of Christ and the coming apocalypse.”
“Thank you to those who bought tickets and wrote thousands of positive reviews on social media,” Sorbo continued. “If you listen to what people have been saying after watching ‘Left Behind,’ you’ll know this is a movie with an urgent message that the world needs to hear.”
On Twitter, Sorbo also encouraged people to support the film.
“The reviews are in! ‘Left Behind: Rise of the Antichrist’ is a MUST SEE! Please, tell everyone you can about the movie and encourage them to go see it,” he wrote. “The more tickets we sell, the longer we can stay in theatres.
In an interview with Fox News Digital, Sorbo revealed he was first approached about making the film seven years ago, but felt now was the perfect time to make it because of all the chaos seen across the world.
“And I look at it and I’m like, maybe this is a blessing,” Sorbo explained. “Because you look at the chaotic world we’re living in right now. It’s almost biblical. It’s almost got a Revelation theme going to it in a way. So I found it interesting that it did end up where it’s at right now. And I don’t know, maybe this was meant to happen and come out now, but it just seems like the time is right.”
The actor did not want to predict the date of Christ’s return but noted that the day seems closer and closer.
“Reading Revelation and looking at what that book says, and reading the Left Behind books, which I read many, many years ago, it just seems like wow, this is like a perfect set-up to what’s happening right now in the world with all the chaos, the anger, the hatred, the divisiveness. And I said, if there’s ever a time for Jesus to come back, it seems like the right time to do it,” he said.