Mark Burnett, the producer of the hit television shows Survivor, The Voice, The Amazing Race and the Son of God movie, tweeted a friendly message to actor Russell Crowe about his newly released film, Noah, last night that kicked off a two-hour Twitter battle of biblical proportions.
Noah, the hotly debated film by Darren Aronofsky, soared to number one at the box office this weekend—taking in $44 million in domestic ticket sales. So far, in its fifth week, Burnett’s Son of God has taken in more than $57 million.
A source close to Burnett says it started out with this harmless tweet: “Hey @RussellCrowe Son of God trumps Noah every time.” But, as our source says, “Russell didn’t take the friendly tweet the way it was intended.” This short tweet began a Twitter battle between producer and actor over artistic quality, biblical accurateness and box office potential.
Russell Crowe replied to Burnett on Twitter and said the Son of God might trump Noah in the Bible, but not at the box office. He also added a few digs on the low-budget quality of SOG—saying it was “campy” and “too American.” Things quickly went downhill from there.
Burnett fired back saying the only thing that could save Noah at the box office was the actual second coming of Christ, to which Crowe responded, “I haven’t been touched by an angel and my movie doesn’t need saving—the writing’s on the wall. #SticktoTV” To which Burnett simple tweeted back “#Rock People.”
A source close to Russell Crowe says the actor was deeply disturbed by the Twitter argument with Burnett—so much so that he’s likely to turn down a starring role in Shem, a loosely-based sequel on the son of Noah.
The tweets have since been taken down, but the Twitter battle ended with Burnett proposing a wager—after one year, whoever has the least grossing film should fast for 40 days in the desert outside Palm Springs.
*Neither Burnett nor Crowe could be contacted for a direct statement, and the Twitter posts no longer exist—so this could be an April Fool’s joke of biblical proportions.
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