New Movie Boldly States GOD IS REAL:
Interview with the Director of GRACE UNPLUGGED
Ben Kayser, Managing Editor
After the Movieguide® Award Winning movie GRACE UNPLUGGED touched and moved our hearts, Director Brad Silverman is preparing his next movie currently titled GOD IS REAL. He spoke with Movieguide® about what led them to make a movie about being unashamed of the Gospel.
Movieguide®: Talk about your decision to crowdsource your next project and what your plan and vision is for GOD IS REAL.
Brad: Well, we made GRACE UNPLUGGED and went the Hollywood route on that. We did it through the studio and had a wonderful experience. Every film has a message. Even if it’s not a Christian film, they’re saying something, and we found then that there was a constant pressure to either soften any biblical stance that we took or broaden the message to be much more inclusive. The Scriptures say, “Narrow is the way that leads to life.” Jesus Himself said, “I am the way, the truth, the life, and no one comes to the Father except through me.” So it is what it is. The message of Christ is a narrow message. Our passion is to be faithful to that message. So, long story short, as we had many wonderful, gracious meetings with the studios, we felt that was the wrong route to take on this particular film about not being ashamed of this very message. We thought it would almost hypocritical to do a film about not being ashamed of Jesus Christ, but we’re going to broaden His message out, we’re going to soften what He said. It just didn’t work in our consciences. So, we really prayed through what to do, we were presented with the idea of doing a crowdfunding model. At first, we weren’t super excited, but we didn’t really understand it. So this wonderful team over at a place called Kappa Studios (we’re partnering with them on it) presented us with a model through Indiegogo, that we thought, “What is there to lose? Let’s just trust God, take this incredible step of faith.” The side note is it’s definitely a step of faith when you walk away from Hollywood money. So, we took that step of faith, and we’re going to see if the Lord wants to provide. We trust Him to provide one way or another, but we thought, “What if we were to partner with people that believe in the message of Christ?”
Movieguide: When you guys start your crowdsourcing campaign, is that when you guys plan on divulging some story details or are you going to keep that under wraps?
Brad: Great question. No, nothing is necessarily under wraps. We will gradually be unfolding the plot and the narrative. Right or wrong, we chose to lead with the cause, with the message of the film, the heart behind the film. In fact, as we speak, because the script’s written, we’ll definitely be sharing as much as people want to hear about the story itself. We’re very excited about it.
Movieguide: I’d like to hear your thoughts on the movie landscape at large when it comes to Christian movies. I think people will automatically think of GOD’S NOT DEAD or SON OF GOD or a lot of these other message-based movies, but where does GOD IS REAL fit into the broad landscape of Christian films?
Brad: Our background, my background, is all about narrative storytelling. So for me without question, I won’t say the most important, but it is important, my passion is to tell an engaging story. So, as far as where it fits in the landscape of Christian movies, my concern is just telling a very engaging, funny story that people will want to see as a movie. In other words, we’re not there to preach a sermon, but we feel that by weaving a very bold biblical Gospel within our story, provided that it’s organic, provided that it lends itself faithfully to the story itself, then we’re fine. I think maybe another way to answer your question is certainly there are so many different kinds of movies that have various degrees of faith messages.
Movieguide: What was the impact that GRACE UNPLUGGED had on Christians or unbelievers? What were some of the stories that came from that movie that may help you or inspire you with GOD IS REAL.
Brad: Great question, thanks for asking. It was overwhelming. We’re on our knees praying every step of the way as we made that film, and I never saw that film as a particularly hardcore message-driven thing. For GRACE UNPLUGGED, we were blown away by the barrage of emails, letters, social media messaging, personal people that came up to us when we went to different events and functions. It seemed like every day we would get flooded with a lot of families, often with tears in their eyes, telling us their story. They were somewhere along the journey that Grace and her family were on in the film. Some of them were very happy endings where we’d see fathers and daughters hugging one another, other times you’d see a mom with tears in her eyes saying their daughter is still not reconciled to the Lord or with them. So, we could pray with them, and from a salvation standpoint even, I was overwhelmed by the amount of people who said that the Lord used that in their life to convict them of their own sin to the point of even coming to saving faith in Christ. I’ll add that part of the motivation of wanting to do GOD IS REAL, about not being ashamed of the Gospel, which is really the subtitle. We may not stick with the title GOD IS REAL because it sounds somewhere between SON OF GOD, GOD’S NOT DEAD and HEAVEN IS FOR REAL or something. Either great minds think alike or we’ve got to come up with a different title, I’m not sure yet. It’s because of the impact that that little film, GRACE UNPLUGGED, had, that really motivated us to just be all in on this next film.
Movieguide: How can people get involved? If people want to share this with their friends, what can they say or what can they do to help get this project going?
Brad: We have a pretty good presence on social media. So there’s the Facebook page GOD IS REAL, where there’s a lot of posts that happen and information about the story. The best way would be to go to the website godisrealmovie.com for certainly the story itself, the film itself, updates, and so on. If people sign up for updates, that’ll be the best way of staying informed. In terms of sharing with others, yeah, certainly through social media. Like the GOD IS REAL page, and just talking it up with friends, family, people from church, pastors, and you name it.
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