Is Hollywood really anti-Christian?

NPR writes that Jon Erwin, director of the new movie October Baby, “hasn’t found much success working with Hollywood. When he recently spoke at an October Baby screening at the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank in Washington, D.C., Erwin said so a little more bluntly, arguing that Christians didn’t feel very welcome in Hollywood’s movie community.

I wonder if it’s really “Christians” or “Christianity” that Hollywood has an issue with or something else. I’m not sure Hollywood has a problem with faith or faith topics when they’re presented in an honest manor.

And I wonder what Steve Taylor or Matt Barber would say about that.

Steve Taylor has written recently that in making Blue Like Jazz – The Movie, they’ve received more flack from the “Christian movie industry” than Hollywood itself.

He also writes that “Christian Movie” has calcified in the public consciousness into a genre where:

  • Sentimentality trumps substance
  • Good intentions trump artistry
  • All conflict must be tidily resolved
  • “Safe for the whole family” is a de facto requirement
  • Or as writer David McFadzean summarized, Christian movies are like porn – poorly lit, poorly acted and you always know how they’re going to end.

Despite what some might suggest, it seems to me that Hollywood (and the general public at large) is always interested in a good story – that’s well told.

And I can think of a number of films that Hollywood has gladly welcomed in the last 10 years or so that have dealt specifically with faith (and that doesn’t include all the others that include elements of faith and truth).

Perhaps the biggest issue folks like Jon Erwin have is they expect Hollywood to always welcome films that shine a positive light on faith and Christianity…

What do you think? Is Hollywood set on killing stories of faith (or Christianity)?

And maybe additionally, in this age when film making is becoming more and more accessible to folks – does it matter?

BTW – Blue Like Jazz releases in the US on April 13th. October Baby is in theaters now.

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Jonathan Blundell

I'm a husband, father, blogger, podcaster, author and media geek who is hoping to live a simple life and follow The Way. How can I help you tell your story?

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