The Power and Potential of Rising Christian FilmmakersThe first day of the Christian Worldview Filmmakers Guild came to a rousing finale with the evening keynote session presented by George Escobar, the founder of Advent Film Group.
He gave a brief testimony of how God pulled him out from Hollywood to keep him from being consumed by the business, then later led him to create a company not just to make films, but to train up the next generation of filmmakers. “More than half of those who get involved in the Christian film industry leave after just a few projects,” he told his audience.
Embarking on a journey through film history, Mr. Escobar compared Hollywood and Christian films to two railroad tracks, asking which train we wanted to be on at this crossroads. Historically, clergy were involved in vetting the scripts presented by the Hollywood studios, but when they threw out the Hayes Code in 1966, “Hollywood lost its moral compass,” he said.
Mr Escobar believes Christian filmmakers are on track to catch up to, and then surpass, Hollywood films within the next 20 years! Why? Quoting Psalm 42:2, because every person in every audience has a hunger that only God can fill. “And Hollywood can only tickle that spot,” he told us. “When you combine that hunger with the Holy Spirit and a gripping story, the impact is huge.”
He shared with us his vision of a future where people filled theaters to watch excellent films made by our rising generation, and being transformed by the power of the Holy Spirit through the story.
After leading the audience in a reading of the 23rd Psalm, Mr. Escobar concluded by drawing parallels from the well-known scripture to each element of a good story surrounding a relatable and realistic main character.
In a short Q & A session, he shared about his upcoming project, “Trapped in Hitler’s Hell”, a true story about Anita Dittman, a Holocaust survivor who twice escaped Nazi camps to save her mother.