TV
12/18/2013 03:04 pm ET Updated Jan 25, 2014

NBC Gives 'The Bible' Sequel The Green Light

History

"The Bible" was one of the most ambitious television projects of all time, and then it became one of the biggest cable hits of all time.

Premiering to 13.1 million viewers, the 10-hour miniseries was a smash hit for History, beating most everything else on television, including NBC. Well, the Peacock is ensuring that won't happen again. The network announced that it has greenlit the sequel, "A.D.: Beyond the Bible."

"We are firmly in the ‘event’ business and nothing has more event potential than 'A.D.' as it continues immediately after the 'The Bible' ended," NBC Entertainment chairman Robert Greenblatt said in a statement.

"Everyone’s lives were completely altered in an instant and the immediate aftermath of Christ’s death had an impact on his disciples, his mother Mary, and key political and religious leaders of the time," NBC president Jennifer Salke added. "In the first episode alone you see the last moments of the Crucifixion, Judas taking his own life after betraying Christ, Peter denying Jesus three times, and then the miracle of the Resurrection."

The husband-and-wife team of Mark Burnett and Roma Downey, who created and produced "The Bible," are on board for the sequel as well. The couple said in a statement, "It is the story that changed the world. Millions have died for it and billions live by it. We know that an enormous community will be counting the days until 'A.D.' premieres. We look forward to making this an epic global television event."

Considering "The Sound of Music Live!" scored 18.6 million viewers for NBC, there is tremendous potential for "A.D." to smash its predecessor's ratings.

Even with impressive cable ratings these days on shows like "The Walking Dead" and "Duck Dynasty," there's still nothing like the reach of the broadcast networks to attract a massive audience.

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