Some of the set locations were too far apart for the actors to realistically make it to their next scene during the course of a commercial break. But the cross procession and stage performances of contemporary hits are performed live.
“Fox cast primarily singers with acting backgrounds and 98 percent of The Passion is sung,” Jencarlos Canela – who plays Jesus Christ – tells PEOPLE. “All of us are used to the live performance in front of an audience. That excites us.”
But the excitement of doing a live show also comes with the acceptance that anything could happen.
“There’s a live procession where thousands of people – kids with their parents, teachers, students, moms, dads – are going to be carrying a 20-ft cross lit in white from one end of the city to the stage and there is going to be live reporters next to them grabbing live testimonies and images that you will see in between scenes,” explains Canela.
“And that is anything goes,” he continues. “There are going to be all types of people in that procession – people there because they love the story because they need some love in their lives, people that are angry or sad and we embrace all of it because this story is not just for people that believe in it.”
The Passion airs Sunday at 8 p.m. (ET) on Fox.