Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
'Mad Men' Creator Matthew Weiner Reportedly Blocked Jon Hamm From Starring In David Fincher's 'Gone Girl' 'Mad Men' Creator Matthew Weiner Reportedly Blocked Jon Hamm From Starring In David Fincher's 'Gone Girl' Sacha Baron Cohen Reportedly Returning To Write, Produce, Star In & Direct The Freddie Mercury Biopic Sacha Baron Cohen Reportedly Returning To Write, Produce, Star In & Direct The Freddie Mercury Biopic Watch: James Bond Is Back In First Trailer For 'Spectre' Starring Daniel Craig, Lea Seydoux, Dave Bautista, & More Watch: James Bond Is Back In First Trailer For 'Spectre' Starring Daniel Craig, Lea Seydoux, Dave Bautista, & More Terrence Malick's Next Film With Ryan Gosling, Rooney Mara & Michael Fassbender Reportedly Gets Titled Terrence Malick's Next Film With Ryan Gosling, Rooney Mara & Michael Fassbender Reportedly Gets Titled Watch: Jake Gyllenhaal Gets Bloody And Bruised In First Trailer For Boxing Drama 'Southpaw' Watch: Jake Gyllenhaal Gets Bloody And Bruised In First Trailer For Boxing Drama 'Southpaw' Why Is It Suddenly Not OK To Have Been Gripped By 'The Jinx'? Why Is It Suddenly Not OK To Have Been Gripped By 'The Jinx'? New Infographic Lays Out Canonical 'Star Wars' Timeline With Films, TV And Books New Infographic Lays Out Canonical 'Star Wars' Timeline With Films, TV And Books First Official Image: Jesse Eisenberg As Lex Luthor In 'Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice' First Official Image: Jesse Eisenberg As Lex Luthor In 'Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice' Watch: First Trailer For Arnold Schwarzenegger's Zombie Pic 'Maggie' With Abigail Breslin Watch: First Trailer For Arnold Schwarzenegger's Zombie Pic 'Maggie' With Abigail Breslin Idris Elba Replaces Jamie Foxx In Harmony Korine's 'The Trap,' Al Pacino, Robert Pattinson, James Franco Also Join Idris Elba Replaces Jamie Foxx In Harmony Korine's 'The Trap,' Al Pacino, Robert Pattinson, James Franco Also Join Watch: Explore The Loneliness Of Sofia Coppola's Films With This Supercut Watch: Explore The Loneliness Of Sofia Coppola's Films With This Supercut 10 Terrible Films Starring Great Actors 10 Terrible Films Starring Great Actors Watch: Tom Hanks Acts Out His Filmography In 7-Minutes On 'The Late Late Show' Watch: Tom Hanks Acts Out His Filmography In 7-Minutes On 'The Late Late Show' The 25 Best Animated Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Animated Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Films Of 2015 We've Already Seen The 25 Best Films Of 2015 We've Already Seen Best Of 2014: The 15 Best Movie Soundtracks Of 2014 Best Of 2014: The 15 Best Movie Soundtracks Of 2014 The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More

The Team Who Brought You ‘Left Behind’ Rebooting The Series With A Christian Disaster Movie

The Playlist By Ryan Sartor | The Playlist November 2, 2011 at 4:35AM

It’s easy to imagine the filmmakers of faith-based pictures like “Courageous” and “Left Behind” dismissing mainstream critics’ self-perpetuating jeer machine as “secular propaganda,” but anyone who’s read a David Mamet book or watched David O. Russell lose his mind can tell you that becoming a successful artist involves selfishly pursuing one’s goals for years on end, destroying lives and dreams in the process. These faith-based guys are just too nice to do this well.
0


It’s easy to imagine the filmmakers of faith-based pictures like “Courageous” and “Left Behind” dismissing mainstream critics’ self-perpetuating jeer machine as “secular propaganda,” but anyone who’s read a David Mamet book or watched David O. Russell lose his mind can tell you that becoming a successful artist involves selfishly pursuing one’s goals for years on end, destroying lives and dreams in the process. These faith-based guys are just too nice to do this well.

Quality be damned, Paul Lalonde and John Patus, two writers who worked on previous 'Left Behind' scripts, have written an as-yet-untitled reboot of the franchise. It’s unclear if the script is based on one of the sixteen (!) ‘Left Behind’ books written between 1995-2007 by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins. What we do know is that the picture is in the vein of a classic disaster movie. It won’t feature John Cusack waiting for Tom McCarthy to die so he can get back together with Amanda Peet, but rather, the Rapture.

Cloud Ten Pictures, the production company that financed the first three ‘Left Behind’ pictures (one theatrical, two straight to DVD, all successful), is owned by screenwriter Paul Lalonde. Cloud Ten will be financing the $15 million picture. It will be one of the most expensive films to come out of the burgeoning Christian-themed film market, which currently has a hit in theatres with the $28 million-grossing "Courageous."

"Courageous" came from the more auteur-minded corner of the faith-based filmmaking community. Unlike the ‘Left Behind’ films, which have each had different creative hands behind the wheel, Sherwood Pictures (the studio behind "Courageous," “Fireproof,” and “Facing the Giants”) has so far only made films directed by Alex Kendrick, produced by Stephen Kendrick, and written by the two brothers together. It makes for an interesting artistic progression from film to film and would make for an even more interesting episode of Sundance Channel’s “Iconoclast” if you got the Kendricks in a room with the Coen Brothers.

This writer has seen "Courageous" and was surprised by its well-staged action scenes and ambitious plot, which was reminiscent of “Crash.” The main difference between the two films was that "Crash" featured people from all different races or religions learning to deal with one another, while "Courageous" featured Baptist people learning to accept that they are Baptist, or should become Baptist, or are currently Baptist, but need to reaffirm their faith (Baptist).

It is, however, quite inspiring that the church members of Sherwood Baptist Church in Albany, Georgia can come together and make a feature film on a $2 million budget. The cast and crew are nearly all members of the church, which ends up explaining some of the amateurish acting in these films. Sherwood Pictures does not seem to have any connection to Cloud Ten Pictures—aside from their mutual love of Kirk Cameron—but while "Courageous" and "Fireproof" cost $2 million and $500,000, respectively, they each pulled in over $25 million at the box office. The first ‘Left Behind’ film cost around $4 million and just barely made back its budget at the box office. The series no doubt made millions more on home video, but still, it feels a bit risky to lay down a $15 million bet on this ‘Left Behind’ reboot, especially if the film is not directly based on a book, which will lower its perceived legitimacy. Plus, Cloud Ten Pictures just needs to step up their faith-based web presence in general because this YouTube page isn’t cutting it.

Check out the trailer for the latest ‘Left Behind’ film, “Left Behind: World at War,” and imagine what this will look like with an additional $11 million thrown at it. [THR]

This article is related to: Films, Films In Development, Genre Films


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


Check out Indiewire on LockerDome on LockerDome

E-Mail Updates