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The Nativity Story (2006)

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A drama that focuses on the period in Mary and Joseph's life where they journeyed to Bethlehem for the birth of Jesus.


Mike Rich
2,529 ( 63)
3 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Keisha Castle-Hughes ... Mary
Oscar Isaac ... Joseph
Hiam Abbass ... Anna
Shaun Toub ... Joaquim
Ciarán Hinds ... Herod
Shohreh Aghdashloo ... Elizabeth
Stanley Townsend ... Zechariah
Alexander Siddig ... The Angel Gabriel
Nadim Sawalha ... Melchior
Eriq Ebouaney ... Balthasar
Stefan Kalipha Stefan Kalipha ... Gaspar
Alessandro Giuggioli ... Antipas
Farida Ouchani Farida Ouchani ... Ruth
Saïd Amadis Saïd Amadis ... Tero
Maria Giovanna Donzelli Maria Giovanna Donzelli ... Mary's Friend


In Nazareth, teenager Mary is betrothed to the local carpenter, Joseph. Mary is visited by an angel and told that she will fulfill a prophecy and as a virgin give birth to God's son, the savior of the world. Mary's pregnancy brings her the scorn of the community and Joseph struggles to believe her seemingly outlandish story. Meanwhile, a census forces every man and his family to return to his place of birth. Joseph and Mary set out on a long and arduous journey to Bethlehem. This story is based on the Biblical account of the birth of Jesus Christ. Written by L. Hamre

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Her child would change the world. See more »


Drama | Family | History

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for some violent content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »






Release Date:

1 December 2006 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Nativity See more »


Box Office


$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$7,849,304, 3 December 2006, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$37,629,831, 18 January 2007

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$46,432,264, 17 August 2008
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

DTS | SDDS | Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Mike Rich began writing the screenplay of the movie on 1 December 2005, exactly a year before its release. See more »


When Herod is making a sacrifice to atone for his misdeeds in the temple, he offers a bull. According to Leviticus, the proper sacrifice for a ruler who sins is a goat. See more »


[a man tries to steal their money]
Joseph: What comes with us, stays with us.
See more »


Referenced in 2007 Camie Awards (2007) See more »


In Rosa Vernat Lilium
(The Rose and the Lily)
Music by Mychael Danna
Lyrics by Elizabeth Danna
Performed by Azam Ali
Azam Ali appears courtesy of Six Degrees Records
See more »

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User Reviews

What Inspirational Christmas Movies Should Be
3 January 2007 | by iluvhellokittySee all my reviews

The Nativity Story is by no means a commercial portrayal of the Biblical story. I'll admit this. The power of the film and what, in my view, makes it far and away the best thing to happen to Christmas films in a long time is that it is indeed a realistic portrayal of human emotions.

When I say the previews for the release I knew that this was going to be something interesting. Since the movie is based on the lovable retelling of Jesus' birth, I knew that I wouldn't be disappointed. And after leaving the theaters, to say the least, I was pleased.

The acting was phenomenal. To say that I completely fell in love with the character of Mary, whom was brilliantly played by Keisha Castle-Hughes, would be a complete understatement. Someone who was so pure, obedient, and virtuous is in my mind what all of us should attempt to become. As Mary stated "I have broken no vow." It is clear that Castle-Huhghes has acquired the maturity and intellect that was essential in playing such a prestigious role.I loved how the film acknowledges that Mary was only a child when she became the mother of Jesus, and the movie shows the emotional transformation of Mary. During her pregnancy Mary had experienced the power of bravery, the depth of kindness, the miracle of life and the profoundness of love. As a result she had grown from a frightened and unaccepted child to a woman.

I appreciated the portrayal of Joseph in the film. In the Catholic Church Joseph is rarely though of however in this film he was incredibly realistic and acted exactly as I have always imagined Joseph. Though Joseph was frightened he was humble. As Mary stated, "he is a man that puts others needs before his." He protected, cared and loved Mary, despite what others thought of her. Congrats to Oscar Isaac for doing an amazing job as portraying Josephs character.

What I find to be the most brilliant about the film is that it is as nonreligious as possible. The movie is in many ways a gritty love story about a couple and their growing relationship through times of tragedy. Catherine Hardwicke has a reputation for directing films that portray the gritty teenage essence, and she takes her talent of amazing depictions of the teenage nature to the story of the beloved Virgin Mary. This is an excellent Christmas film and I encourage everyone to see it!

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