Producer’s Update

It has been an interesting summer.  I guess that is the best way to say it.  So much has happened and yet it feels as if nothing has been accomplished.  For an achiever like me, that is hard to deal with.  And yet, I don’t think we could be where we are today without the experience of this summer.

I found this great quote by one of my favorite authors, A. W. Tozer (he actually officiated the wedding ceremony for my grandparents, by the way).  He said, “It is as if God were saying, ‘What I am is all that need matter to you, for there lie your hope and your peace.  I will do what I will do, and it will all come to light at last, but how I do it is My secret.  Trust Me, and be not afraid.’” That quote has helped me make it through some pretty dark hours.  There were many times when I didn’t think this movie was going to happen.  To be honest, there were many times when I didn’t want it to happen because it seemed like the source of all kinds of conflict and discouragement.  But, in those moments, and they were low moments, I would read that quote and be reminded that I will not always see God moving, but I could, and should, still trust Him.

Personally, this has been one of the greatest and most stretching endeavors of my life.  In a previous position at another church, we wrote, designed, produced and executed an original stage production on the Passion week of Christ’s life – from concept to reality – in just 8 short weeks.  That was no small or stress-free task.  The 9-month process we’ve been through with NOT TODAY has been far more intense, far more gut wrenching, far more frustrating.  Even during those times, however, we have had to go back, again and again, to the reason why we started down this road to begin with.  That reason – to raise awareness about what is happening to the Dalit people group of India.  I remember one day, probably in July, I was driving and felt God say to me, “This film will be the most difficult film you will ever make.”  If you stop and think about it, we are creating something that will bring attention to modern day slavery, to human trafficking and ultimately, to an area of the world that Satan has in his control.  This will not be easy, but nothing worth anything ever is easy, right?!

That said, we are in a new day, a new phase, with a renewed energy for NOT TODAY.  God has brought together His team for this film.  We are learning how to work better and better together.  It can be difficult to bring creative minds together and find consensus and yet, it is happening.  There is give and take.  There is progress.

The script should be completed in the next week or so and then on to casting.  We have set principal photography dates  for early 2010.  In October, I leave for India to do a final scout, begin the permit process, secure housing, do preliminary casting for our Indian cast and a myriad of other things.  We’ll be there for 8 days – a lot to accomplish in a short time.  I mentioned casting, we will have a little over 2 months to cast this film.  That is not a lot of time to cast a film.  I met with Bev Holloway, our Casting Director, this week and we began (again) to put our strategy for casting together.  Of course, everything hangs on the script.

So, I’m back to the beginning of this blog – and will leave you with my life verse (pretty ironic, huh?!).  Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all of your heart and lean not on your own understanding.  In all your ways, acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths.”  That makes it pretty simple.  Why do we make it so difficult?

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