Christian Bale Watched Life of Brian To Prepare for Exodus: Gods and Kings

Exodus: Gods and Kings

Christian Bale is playing Moses in Ridley Scott’s biblical epic Exodus: Gods and Kings. At a Los Angeles event showing early footage from the film, Bale spoke about taking on the role of Moses. He surprised the press when he revealed his biggest inspiration was the Monty Python biblical spoof.

“The very first film that I rented immediately after meeting with Ridley and whilst I was still trying to get my head wrapped around it and thinking is this something that could be possible, I went and rented The Life of Brian,” Bale said. “Which is a real favorite film of mine and a beautifully made film, wonderful film. The point being, not only did I enjoy that film a great deal, but anything where you are approaching it from a very earnest point of view can unintentionally become The Life of Brian very quickly. So it was sort of a guiding light throughout for me.”

In taking care to avoid turning Exodus into a joke, Bale himself kept a good sense of humor. “I must confess, ‘Always Look on the Bright Side of Life’ was kind of always humming through my head. Immediately after that, I rented Mel Brooks’ History of the World. He comes down, he says, ‘We’ve got 15 commandments.’ He drops one, says, ‘Oh, the 10 commandments.’”

So if you’re snickering to yourself about Christian Bale in biblical garb parting the Red Sea, you’re not alone. Bale felt recognizing a tendency to laugh was healthy, and something to overcome.

“You still have to get that out of your system and you have to understand what is it that we could unintentionally make funny,” Bale said. “And you have to have humor. With something that is as earnest as this and as heavyweight as this, you have to have an element of comedy in your everyday life during filming because otherwise it just becomes too exhausting.”

Exodus: Gods and Kinds opens December 12.

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