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Actor, Hidden Secrets (Pure Flix Entertainment 2006); six TV series, including latest sensation
Smallville and The Dukes of Hazard; five mini-series; four feature films; one soap opera; 14 movies;
and two of his own TV specials; many guest starring roles and appearances on other TV shows
Played in Broadway Tony Award-winning musical Grand Hotel
Co-founder, Children's Miracle Network
Founded FaithWorksProductions, produces family entertainment
Married to Elly, three children
CBN.com HIDDEN SECRETS
After success on TV and Broadway, John Schneider is now apart of the movie Hidden Secrets. The plot of the film centers around the sudden death of a Christian “hometown hero,” and the longtime friends and family that gather for his funeral. Together for the first time in years, some begin to reveal hurts and mistakes they have been hiding from one another.
The characters range from John, as the deceased’s atheist boss to a Christian end-times author’s wife – the stereotypical judgmental fundamentalist. John says, “This is the first time I’ve read a script where the voice of skepticism is accurately written in a script about Christianity.” He appreciated that the film is not “preachy,” and emphasized that while it is important to do Christian films, it is more important how they are done. “Christian films are supposed to make you go ‘hmmm.’”
Homosexuality, abortion, and promiscuity are just a few of the issues pioneering Christian filmmaker, Pure Flix Entertainment, tackles in their upcoming theatrical release, Hidden Secrets.
“Our story is about real people with real struggles. Christians deal with these issues every day,” said producer and co-star David A.R. White (Mercy Streets, The Moment After). “We know that in churches around the country we find people who have either had an abortion, struggled with homosexuality, or given in to sexual temptation, yet we would rather not talk about it. With Hidden Secrets, we decided it was time to tear off the blinders, and let people see that Christians are affected by these issues. We want people to see that there is hope and redemption, no matter what the issue. We also wanted to approach these topics in a humorous way, because laughter helps in dealing with life when it gets tough.”
The plot of the film centers around the sudden death of a Christian “hometown hero,” and the longtime friends and family that gather for his funeral. Together for the first time in years, some begin to reveal hurts and mistakes they have been hiding from one another.
The Dove Foundation has given its “Seal of Approval,” calling it a “powerful film,” “boldly dealing with controversial subjects” and “leading to a satisfying conclusion.” The American Family Association gives it high marks for solid acting and believable character portrayals.
Hidden Secrets will hold its national premiere in more than 200 theaters in 26 markets for the date of April 30 only. Screenings were previously held in select markets on Feb. 28 and March 1 with audiences and critics both expressing approval for the film.
More information is available on the movie's official Web site, where tickets may be purchased in advance for the one-night national premiere. Promotional materials are also provided for churches and groups who want to get involved. There are already over 1,000 churches supporting theatrical release, and the movie has an accompanying Bible study guide that can also be obtained through the Web site.
Hidden Secrets is the first theatrical release from Pure Flix Entertainment, which produces, distributes, acquires and markets Christian and family-friendly film properties. The company’s mission is to transform the human spirit through values-based entertainment. More information about the company is available at www.pureflixentertainment.com. If it doesn’t come to your theater go on Web site…churches can rent movie/obtain resources like Bible study guides…at the Hidden Secrets Web site.
When John was growing up; his only knowledge of God was through his relationship with his grandmother who told him one day that when she died he shouldn't be worried because she was going to be with God. He just accepted what she told him even though he didn't become a Christian for many years after that. That is still the moment that he looks back on where God became real to him.
It was in 1989 at the age of 29 at a church in Studio City, Calif. John was there with a friend of his. He saw a little old man being helped off the floor after prayer by a huge young black man with braids and gold around his neck, and there was a hug of appreciation between the two. Somehow in that little moment John saw Christ. He saw acceptance; He saw appreciation; He saw selflessness. From that moment on, he understood. It was a tiny little thing that probably took all of four seconds, much like it took four seconds for his grandmother to say that she'd be with God. But he saw something there that made him want to know more about what that was. That was the moment when the first little piece of green sprouted up from the bulb John's grandmother had planted all those years before. After he accepted Christ, he started reading the Bible and looking at things from a different perspective. It was no longer a question of what could he get out of this day. It was, If God is always up to something, what is He up to today and what is my part in it?
THE BIGGER PICTURE
Becoming a Christian changed John's life completely. His life wasn't "all about John anymore." It was about John's part in a much bigger show, a much bigger mission. He started looking at the day and thinking, "There's something I'm supposed to do for God. That changes everything." John thinks God is up to something much bigger than his life. His life is just one of the spokes in the wheel. John thinks God is up to changing people's hearts toward one another — making Himself more obvious through the love and respect that a husband has for a wife or a wife has for a husband, through the love that a father has for his children. God wants to make himself as real to someone who doesn't know Him as He became for that little boy who heard about Him for the first time from his grandmother.
John's Christian beliefs affect every aspect of his life. He believes that his job is to make the people he's working with better and to make their job as easy as possible. He doesn't usually walk up to people and say, "Hey, have you heard about Christ?" He's a Christian who lives his life and people come up to him and say, 'What is it with you?' Then he tells them.
John says there is a bigger place for Christian values in the entertainment industry now more than ever, but they have to be packaged in a clever way. Even Christians don't want to sit around and watch saccharin Christian programming where everything is nice and good and the world's a better place than the one we live in. We need to see on television and in the movies how an ounce of kindness affects people around us; how an understanding ear can change the world we live in. We need to see how a nasty person affects the world we live in too, how someone without God can really mess things up.
(For more of the Assemblies of God magazine article, click here. ©1999-2007 General Council of the Assemblies of God)
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