The production and distribution of movies impacting our society for Christ
Cecil B. DeMille stated, "It is a sobering thought, that the decisions we make at our desks in Hollywood may intimately affect the lives of men, women, and children throughout the world" (Essoe, Gabe; Lee, Raymond 1970. p160. DeMille: The Man and his Pictures. New York)
The greatest anti-Christian influence in America today is the Hollywood movie industry promoting virtually everything that is offensive to God and that should be offensive to God’s people. The Hollywood studios are continuously releasing one movie after another while only infrequently releasing movies of faith. The moral compass in the film industry took a downward swing in the mid-1960s and has been getting worse ever since. Prior to that the motion picture industry had standards of decency with producers like Cecil B. DeMille producing a number of Biblical epics. Possibly the largest premier ever held in Hollywood was at the opening of Grauman’s Chinese Theater in 1926 with DeMille’s silent film epic KING OF KINGS. DeMille penned these thoughts about the struggle for men’s minds after making THE TEN COMMANDMENTS with the late great Charlton Heston:
"More than 3,000 years ago, the great charter of human relations was brought down from Sinai on two tablets of stone by one who was also a builder between man and man and between man and God. In the drama that took place there on Sinai you have in the two brothers, Moses and Aaron, a perfect contrast between public relations used to delude humanity. Both Aaron and Moses saw the peoples need. Aaron taking the short view and looking for the quick result gave the people something glittering to worship, the golden calf. Moses gave them the truth. He gave them hardship, privation, a long, parched, sun-baked hungry trek through the most desolate and forbidding deserts to the foot of Sinai and the Ten Commandments. Between those two, the calf of gold and the law of God, the struggle for men's minds and hearts continues to this day. The outward form of the struggle changes but it goes on in every age, facing all men with the same question. Which do you put first, material values or spiritual values?"
I had the privilege of getting to know Cecil B. DeMille's daughter, Katherine DeMille Quinn. She was a very gracious lady with a fervent heart for the Lord. I was involved with her in a prison outreach ministry, the Hollywood Free Theater, and on the Board of Directors of the domestic crisis-intervention ministry Centrum of Hollywood.
The major Hollywood studios continue to produce and release movies that are demoralizing and filled with obscene language, profanity, senseless violence, gratuitous sex, and the promotion of a hedonistic worldview devoid of God. There has also been an increase of films in recent years promoting the demonic which portray evil triumphing over good.
Meanwhile, there have also been some very good movies produced by Christians that have been released in recent years. A few examples would include FIREPROOF, THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST, AMAZING GRACE, END OF THE SPEAR, FACING THE GIANTS, THE NATIVITY STORY, and THE PURSUIT OF HAPPYNESS.
However, for every movie of faith and redemption there are hundreds of movies released by the major studios and independent film companies polluting viewers minds with anti-Christian images and messages.
The goal of The Christian Studio (TCS) is to accelerate the number of movies of faith and redemption that can help turn the tide of evil in our society and turn hearts toward the Lord. Many of the movies that would be produced would deal with social problems (family breakups, substance and psychological addictions, homosexuality, abortion, gangs, violence, suicide, etc.) while at the same time dramatizing God-given solutions for these problems. I worked on the movie version of THE CROSS AND THE SWITCHBLADE years ago. It relates the true story of Nicky Cruz, one of the most violent gang leaders in New York City and a country preacher who eventually led him to Jesus Christ and a new life. Over the years that movie has been responsible for tens of thousands of individuals finding a new life in Jesus Christ.
The purpose of The Christian Studio is to bring screenplays, together with investors and producers, to make movies of faith and redemption
The Christian Studio will not have a large facility like the Hollywood studios. The purpose of TCS is to facilitate a continuous flow of movies being produced that can have an impact for Christ on our nation. TCS will receive and develop screenplays and treatments from Christian writers and evaluate them -- not only for their potential commercial success, but also for their potential spiritual influence on our society.
Prior to funding, each story will be evaluated for its potential for commercial and spiritual success. The objective is to have several movies in production at the same time, through independent production companies, and have a continuous flow of these dynamic and quality movies released to the public. Budgets would vary from a low of $500,000 up to $250,000,000.
The Christian Studio would evaluate such stories as I have listed on our "Projects" page as well as others in terms of overall budget and potential for commercially-successful production, including potential theatrical release, television production, release to churches, and/or DVD release and distribution. TCS would not receive funding for the movies nor be responsible for the accounting. The funds would go directly to the company producing the movie. The investor would deal directly with the production company. TCS would simply bring powerful stories of faith together with investor and producer.
There is hope for America and may the production of movies of faith influence millions of lives for Christ.