Tomorrow night my church gets to host the world premiere of a movie titled “What If…” at our Elgin campus. Since my small group normally meets Monday nights, we agreed to go to the movie instead. Since our church is at four campuses (five including a small one in the city) with 2-3 services at each, this single event at a single campus promises to be a crowded one, especially at the price they are charging- free. Just today I learned this world premiere comes probably thanks to the director, Dallas Jenkins, joining the staff at the church as Director of Visual Media. He is the son of author Jerry B. Jenkins (best known for coauthoring the Left Behind series). Hmm… a partnership with a well-known actor, and now a movie director, son of a famous author on staff, not to mention my pastor whose name is out there- have you heard of the radio program Walk in the Word?- should I worry about my church becoming too public? In any event, I am looking forward to the movie and meeting the three stars afterward. I wonder if this appearance was part of their contract? So- all I have to do is make sure I finish work no later than 5PM so I can get there- a half-hour drive from the store I end at in St. Charles (and a mere 5 min. from the store I start at- aargh!). In any event, here is a link to the trailer. Sorry, I couldn’t find it on youtube so I couldn’t embed it: FOUND IT!
Description from youtube page: Introducing What if… a Pure Flix and Jenkins Entertainment film. Starring, Kevin Sorbo, Kristy Swanson, Debby Ryan, and John Ratzenberger.
What If tells the story of Ben Walker (Kevin Sorbo), who fifteen years ago left his college sweetheart Wendy (Kristy Swanson), and his calling to be a preacher, in order to pursue a business opportunity. Now with a high-paying executive gig, a trophy fiancé, and a new Mercedes, he hasnt considered a family nor felt the need to set foot in a church in fifteen years.
But God has other plans. While on a thrill ride outside the city, his new car mysteriously breaks down, and hes visited by a tow truck driver named Mike (John Ratzenberger) who claims to be an angel sent to show Ben what his life would look like had he followed his true calling. Suddenly Ben wakes up in the middle of domestic chaos as his wife Wendy and daughters (including Disney Channels Debby Ryan) are getting ready for church, where Ben is the new pastor.
Before he can get back to his old life, Ben must first embrace this reality and discover the value of faith and family, and perhaps restore his love for those who were heartbroken fifteen years ago: Wendyand God. In the tradition of Its a Wonderful Life and The Family Man, What If is a story of finding your true purpose in life.
Hmm- well then- I just took a look at Jerry Jenkin’s home page and he provides a youtube link to a behind the scenes video! I also found a couple more on that account, and another youtube account containing director’s diaries. Here are a couple to get you started. I still have to view them myself…
5 thoughts on “What If…”
That looks pretty good – you’ll have to let us know how it is. Let’s see, I don’t recognize the names of any of the staff, although the Left Behind series sounds familiar. But I know that Kevin Sorbo was tv’s Hercules (didn’t watch it tho) and Kristy Swanson was an early 90’s actress, most known to me as the star of Mannequin 2. Think she tried to do Dancing with the Stars more recently, with what star power, I don’t know.
Our church is going to have a movie event as well, at first I thought this was the same one, but ours is more oriented toward kids. Can’t remember the title, I’ll have to get back to you on that as the event gets closer.
Yes, I really enjoyed that TV series when it was on, and for the most part its spinoff, Xena.
I look forward to learning more of your movie event. 🙂
Lets see… Sorbo we know from Hercules (think he was in the running for a Star Trek series… Enterprise, maybe?), Kristy Swanson played Buffy, the Vampire Slayer in the theatrical movie (before the tv series) and Ratzenberger is a Pixar mainstay (Hamm in the Toy Story movies) and was also Cliff Clavin on Cheers (I won’t say anymore at the fear of raising my geek level any higher, but I could)
The movie does look pretty good. It’s a Wonderful Life… where have I heard that name before 😉
It’s called “To Save a Life” and after reading the synopsis on imdb, I’d say yes, it’s definitely geared toward teen drama. Seems heavy; yours seems heartwarming. I’ll let you know what I think, you do the same.
It’s a Wonderful Life was a clear influence. I listened to the Dallas Jenkins interview linked on his pop’s site and the Sorbo youtube vid, and both mentioned the movie.
I remember Sorbo wanting to play Superman, but I don’t remember any link between him and Trek. He was in another sci-fi series though- Gene Roddenberry’s Andromeda. The other two I don’t know much about at all unfortunately.