NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)--It's a fantasy universe where witches are good, the church is bad, and at the end of it all, God dies.
"My books are about killing God." -- Philip Pullman, author of "The Golden Compass"
It's the world of author Philip Pullman's "His Dark Materials" trilogy, and on Dec. 7 a movie based on the first book in that series, "The Golden Compass," hits theaters. For weeks now, the movie has been the focus of e-mails from concerned Christians, curious if what they heard about it is true. In this instance -- as even the truth-or-fiction website Snopes.com affirms -- the rumors mostly are fact.
Pullman himself is not sure whether he's an atheist or an agnostic, but his own words leave little doubt that he has a strong distaste for Christianity -- at least Christianity as he sees it.
The entire series has been dubbed the "anti-Narnia," with Pullman regularly expressing disdain for C.S. Lewis' fictional world and even once calling it "propaganda in the service of a life-hating ideology." He has sought to write a completely different fictional tale, and he has succeeded. He said in a 2001 interview, "I'm trying to undermine the basis of Christian belief," and two years later told another newspaper, "My books are about killing God."
Pullman has been more toned down in recent interviews, perhaps because New Line Cinema has invested more than $150 million in the first installment and because it needs to be successful if the final two books are to make it to the big screen. Read More