In the midst of teaching high school English and Theatre this fall, I managed to squeeze in a film project as well! Mobberly Baptist Church created their own film depicting the life of Christ, in which I played Mary. We filmed in West Texas to create the desert feeling of Israel, and built a rough sound stage inside a barn in East Texas for most of the interior shots.
It was so interesting to play a character like Mary, who I have read about my whole life. We really focused on her humanity and "normalness" rather than her holiness. While God definitely sanctified her for a purpose, exploring the thoughts and emotions that she must have had from the moment of conception throughout the life of Christ really changed my perspective on her.
One of my favorite parts of the film was the scene after Gabriel has appeared to Mary and told her that she will conceive Jesus. The director wanted to see Mary's emotional response to the realization that life as she knew it was over. People would think she was crazy, and Joseph might cast her away. She could be stoned and would bring dishonor to her whole family. She had to have a great amount of faith that God would provide for her and protect her. I really enjoyed improvising the feelings that Mary may have gone through during this time.