Since writing films like Braveheart and Pearl Harbor and directing We Were Soldiers, Randall Wallace made a major shift to a purely inspirational family drama a few years ago with the horse racing Disney hit Secretariat. Now, according to a new report from Variety he’s headed even further down that path with a new project.
The trade reports that he has signed with Sony for a new faith-based family film titled Heaven Is For Real, but only to develop for now with sights set on possibly coming on as director. Mulan II and Battle of the Year writer Christopher Parker adapted Todd Burpo and Lynn Vincent‘s hit novel Heaven Is for Real: A Little Boy’s Astounding Story of His Trip to Heaven and Back, which you can read a synopsis of below thanks to Amazon.
A young boy emerges from life-saving surgery with remarkable stories of his visit to heaven.
Heaven Is for Real is the true story of the four-year old son of a small town Nebraska pastor who during emergency surgery slips from consciousness and enters heaven. He survives and begins talking about being able to look down and see the doctor operating and his dad praying in the waiting room. The family didn’t know what to believe but soon the evidence was clear.
Colton said he met his miscarried sister, whom no one had told him about, and his great grandfather who died 30 years before Colton was born, then shared impossible-to-know details about each. He describes the horse that only Jesus could ride, about how “reaaally big” God and his chair are, and how the Holy Spirit “shoots down power” from heaven to help us.
Told by the father, but often in Colton’s own words, the disarmingly simple message is heaven is a real place, Jesus really loves children, and be ready, there is a coming last battle.
As we’ve seen in recent years, this spiritual, faith-based projects can light up the box office seemingly out of nowhere (listen to Kim Masters‘ fantastic interview with some marketers on how The Blind Side was sold to this demographic). And I think many can agree that the one thing lacking in these projects is strong talent behind and in front of the camer. If Wallace can provide that without a heavy dose of sugarcoating, I’d actually be interested in seeing this fascinating true-life story on the big screen.
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