Film-maker Ed Smith had such great fun and success with “Surviving Guthrie” three years ago that he’s at it again – this time with a 40- to 50-minute faith-based project that’s scheduled to be shot over the course of 13 days in February, March and April on campus.
The main characters for “Undeserved” have been cast, but Smith will be needing “extras.” Contact him at (502) 863-8042 or Ed_Smith@georgetowncollege.edu. to get involved. He could also use other kinds of help – especially from area restaurants that might like to donate meals for the cast and crew during the days of filming.
“There’s a real demand for relevant, faith-based movies,” said Smith, chair of Georgetown College’s Theatre & Performance Studies department. “This needs to be accessible, something the whole family can enjoy.”
Although the school in the film is a fictitious, small, liberal arts institution, Georgetown College is the perfect welcoming and loving place for Smith’s project. “I feel this film certainly fits in with our academic and spiritual mission,” he said. “It will help further show Who We Are.”
Please read the feature advance BELOW that appeared as the lead story on the Georgetown News-Graphic’s Arts page on Thursday, Jan. 13.
GC Professor Plans Faith-Based Indie Film
Extras Sought for ‘Undeserved’
By Elizabeth Worster
Most movies today focus on war, some type of action or the Hollywood idea of true love. They rarely concern what freshmen in a Christian college face, such as finding out who they are and learning the definition of forgiveness.
Ed Smith wants to change that.
Smith, a Georgetown College professor and chair of the department of theatre and performance, will begin making an independent film on the college campus in February and will be looking for extras from the community.
Smith filmed Surviving Guthrie, a comedy about characters who make life hard for one another. The film took viewers on a journey of what people do for the people they care about. The movie won eight awards at film festivals across the country.
Although the movie was secular, Undeserved, his new film, will be faith-based. The movie is written by his wife, Betsy.
The movie centers on Tia, a freshman who starts college in the spring semester of a small liberal arts college and gets connected to the Baptist Student Ministry. Tia does not have a lot of money and has a hard time making ends meet.
“She had a conversion experience and doesn’t know what to do with it,” Smith said. “She is running from her past, but she has this passion and this drive. You have these extremes where you wear your faith and then like Tia, you are really driven. The movie is about both these elements and finding that balance and finding out what our spiritual journey truly is.”
“Every good story has to be new but familiar; good stories have to be able to speak to us in a shared experience and we have that with being new or struggling with ourselves,” he said. “In the end, the audience decides.”
The film will be made at the college, and its $40,000 budget will include removable sets built in the Lab Theatre.
“The movie shows a connection of who we are and who you are,” he said. “The reason why I started was to see what makes Georgetown special. Georgetown is a place where people get help and we help people in a lot of ways who need it.”
The college in the movie won’t be called Georgetown College and will be fictional. But the film may surprise those who think the college has become less religious since changing its relationship with the Kentucky Baptist Convention in 2005, said Jim Durham, news director for the college.
That year, the parties agreed that the college would no longer take funding from the KBC, and the convention would not appoint the college’s trustees.
“The movie shows those who were skeptical that we can be trusted,” said college President Bill Crouch. “We are (also) more faith-based now than we were then.”
Most private colleges were founded by religious denominations and have become more secular over the last 30 years. The film is a good way to demonstrate Georgetown’s academic standing with a faith-based component, Crouch said.
“Films attract the intelligent, and for a liberal arts college to do a faith-based film, it is very rare,” Crouch said. “Particularly one that is nationally known like we are.”
The movie is not based on any area of Christianity, but Smith chose the title because of how the character might feel to receive the grace of God, Smith said.
“The film is not which ‘ism’ you are and it is not based on any area of Christianity, but (about) how you help broken people,” he said. “In the story, Tia struggles with forgiveness. One of the things my wife and I talked about is to accept forgiveness — it bugs at us and it eats at us. How do you forgive yourself?
“If you can’t get out of that, you can’t live with joy.”
For more information on how to become an extra, contact Ed Smith at (502) 863-8042 or e-mail Ed_Smith@georgetowncollege.edu.