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Morgan Freeman Interviews Exorcists Despite Step-Granddaughter's Exorcism Death

In the debut episode for Season 3 of The Story of God With Morgan Freeman, actor Morgan Freeman interviewed exorcists and a man who claims to have been possessed by a demon. This episode debuted less than four years after Freeman's step-granddaughter died in an attempted exorcism.

"I'm going on a quest to learn about the devil in all his forms," Freeman says in the episode "Search for the Devil" which aired on March 5.

He speaks with a man who claims to have been possessed by a demon.

"How do you know when the exorcism has been successful?" Freeman asks the man. "Because it stops reacting to the prayers and statements," the man replies.

"You went through this, how long?" the actor asked. "About five years, I think," the man replied.

After the exorcism, "I feel human again." The man said he had "an incredible lack of emotion, I couldn't feel love," but "thankfully, the exorcism was effective in restoring that aspect of my life."

Freeman also interviewed two exorcists who "every day go into combat with the devil," the Christian Post reported.

The National Geographic show explained that Catholic priests consider exorcism "prayers for the soul of someone who is possessed." During an exorcism, an exorcist must have a medical doctor and a psychiatrist present, for the benefit of the possessed person.

One exorcist told Freeman he was currently dealing with a 15-year-old boy who speaks 10 different ancient languages when possessed.

This episode seems particularly noteworthy because a close relative of Freeman's died in an attempted exorcism.

In 2015, Morgan's step-granddaughter, 33-year-old E'Dena Hines, was stabbed to death in an attempted exorcism, the New York Post reported.

Witness George Hudacko recalled hearing "Get out, devils! I cast you out, devils! In the name of Jesus Christ, I cast you out!" as he saw a man, later identified as Hines's boyfriend Lamar Davenport, stab Hines in the chest. He also claimed to hear the attacker yell, "Jesus Christ is born!"

Hines was the granddaughter of Freeman's first wife, Jeanette Adair Bradshaw, to whom he was married from 1967 to 1979. Freeman lamented Hines's death in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter.

"The world will never know her artistry and talent, and how much she had to offer," Freeman said. "Her friends and family were fortunate enough to have known what she meant as a person. Her star will continue to shine bright in our hearts, thoughts and prayers. May she rest in peace."

" is the devil? A god? A fallen angel? Or a natural urge lurking inside us all?" the episode synopsis reads. "Morgan Freeman’s quest to discover how humankind’s views of evil incarnate affect our world takes him from the Holy Land to Rome to a temple in Vietnam. In his travels, he learns that whether the devil is seen as an antagonist or a natural complement to the forces of good, there is a role for the dark side in almost every faith."

It seems he did not use the episode to address the dark side of exorcism in his own past, although he did recall channeling evil in a movie audition.

Season 3 of the show features six episodes that "take viewers on an interfaith journey around the globe, traveling to 30 different cities of historical and anthropological importance, including Jerusalem, Kathmandu, Jericho, Rome, Bethlehem, Paris, Prague, Hanoi, Toronto and Lourdes."

According to National Geographic, "the series’ filmmakers met with 13 religious experts, eight priests, three druids, three shamans, one imam, one rabbi, one former executioner, one nun, two 'living goddesses' and hundreds of monks. The series interviews believers of many faiths including Christians, Jews, pagans, druids, Muslims, Hindus, Jains, animists, Buddhists and agnostics."

Follow Tyler O'Neil, the author of this article, on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.