GOSHEN (ABC4 Utah News) -Parts of Utah have been transformed into Jerusalem in 600 B.C. It’s actually a film set where The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is filming a series of videos.
In heat only a camel could like, the cast and crew of The Book of Mormon shoot a scene near Goshen. Jackson Vanderwerken plays the role of Nephi.
“It’s so exciting,” Vanderwerken told ABC4 Utah News. “I feel like I’m playing one of the superheroes from the Marvel movies in my eyes.”
Actress Kimberly Mellen has the role of Nephi’s mother Sariah.
“She’s essential because there’s so few women that are mentioned in The Book of Mormon,” Mellen said. “I think women, contemporary women are really eager for a female voice, a female experience, a female directive, female leadership.”
Another of Sariah’s sons, Lemuel, is portrayed by actor Sam Petersen.
“It’s also been a challenge learning how to portray Lemuel,” Petersen said. “There’s not a whole lot about him in The Book of Mormon and so I have to kinda decide who he’s going to be because I don’t get a lot of direction from the book. It’s been a challenge but it’s also been fun. Fun to have that liberty to figure out who he is.”
Aaron Merrell is the Producer of The Book of Mormon video series.
“It’s really exciting for me to think of these characters coming to life,” Merrell said. “So that people who watch this can really relate to the people back there and feel the authenticity of their experience so that when they learn these very powerful important teachings they can see that it happened to actual real people that went through these experiences.”
The cast hopes these videos will inspire viewers around the world to read – or reread – The Book of Mormon.
“Hopefully after they watch from a human perspective and feel something emotionally it will draw them to crack open their scriptures and read the stories more in depthly,” Mellen said.
These videos will be available next year on the www.LDS.org website and on their own YouTube channel.
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