Clarke stated that since Warner Bros. owns the old MGM library, he couldn’t remake anything anymore from that, and that’s the reason he couldn’t use any inspiration from the 1959 version if the same were not mentioned in the source material, the original book.
Clarke further clarified that it is probably the main reason why Judah Ben-Hur and Messala are just platonic brothers and nothing more in their re-adaptation. Judah is in love with Esther while Messala is in love with Judah’s sister, that’s it.
When Kebbel was asked about his views on their “slight” change in the plot, he was very supportive of the change and said that times have changed. Back in the 1950’s the gay context was way less talked about, and the plot needed the “homoerotic” touch to it.
In recent interviews, the Bruce Almighty actor, Morgan Freeman when asked to give some advice to his co-star in the movie, Rodgrigo Santoro, playing Divinity, said that it’s not hard to play divine if someone wants to know the truth of the matter.
All that being said, if you have free time and even money to spare for watching a few minutes of a nerve-wracking chariot race with one of the best graphics and visuals, well, don’t let us stop you!
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