|New books, music accompany 'Grace Unplugged’ film|
|Written by Christine D. Johnson|
|Thursday, 03 October 2013 09:34 AM EDT|
B&H Publishing Group, LifeWay Christian Resources and Sparrow Records have provided new book and music releases for Christian retailers who want to further the message of Grace Unplugged, a major motion picture appealing to teens. In the film, in theaters starting Oct. 4, a young girl longs to make a name for herself musically and escape the shadow of her one-time music-star father.
B&H introduced in September two new books related to the movie—Grace Unplugged, a novelization of the screenplay by Melody Carlson, and Own It, a nonfiction work by Michael and Hayley DiMarco that encourages readers to develop their own personal faith.
The novel follows Grace Trey as she lands her big break that takes her away from her family and faith and into pop stardom. She pursues this dream on her own despite warnings from her father, Johnny Trey, a one-hit wonder two decades earlier who left the music industry after becoming a Christian.
“I’m hoping we prompt a lot of dialogue between families,” said writer and director Brad J. Silverman, who consulted on the books.
In the plot of both the book and movie, Quentin, the only Christian influence in Grace’s new life, gives her a book to help her reconsider her choices to pursue success at all costs.
Relating to the film, Own It focuses on “leaving behind a borrowed faith.” It contrasts a personal possession of faith with faking, borrowing, renting, picking and choosing, or disowning it. The DiMarcos examine the results of owning faith to help teens “navigate what to do when faith meets real world challenges.”
“Do you own your faith? Do you rent it? Or do you borrow it from your friends or family?” asks Russ Rice, one of the film’s producers and book consultants. “Those are the questions Grace has to answer, and I hope the movie’s audience and the books’ readers answer them, too.”
While the story may seem to be pulled directly from current news headlines, Silverman traces the origin of the story to seeing Rice and his wife deal with their own daughter running away.
“She decided not to embrace the faith of her childhood,” said Silverman. “Grace Unplugged started to take root in my mind when I saw them struggle with a tremendous sincerity of the heart.”
“Six years ago, my daughter chose to discard her family and faith and pursue her own lifestyle,” Rice said. “And going through that, it really gave us a heart for folks. As my wife and I were transparent with what was going on in our family, we started realizing that this is a pretty common theme in the body of Christ.”
LifeWay Christian Resources also partnered with the film to produce small group material for parents and students. The parents’ study uses clips from the film and discussion questions to help participants examine their own pursuits, passions and priorities as a parent, and the student version goes through the same material, but focuses more on Grace and the choices students must make with their faith.
In addition, the soundtrack, Grace Unplugged: Music From the Motion Picture (Sparrow Records/Capitol Christian Distribution), features songs from AJ Michalka, who stars in the movie. It also features songs from TobyMac, Chris Tomlin, Jamie Grace, Josh Wilson, Colton Dixon, Shawn McDonald and more.