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movies, such as Braveheart, Pearl Harbor, and We Were Soldiers
Awards: Won Writers Guild of America
Award for Best Screenplay for Braveheart; Oscar and Golden Globe nominations for
Founder of Hollywood Habitat for Humanity
Studied literature, religion, and Russian
History at Duke University; went to seminary
Love and Honor is a fictional story set during the time of the American Revolutionary War. The main character is a Virginian cavalryman, Kieran Selkirk, who has a meeting with Benjamin Franklin where he learns that the British have made a deal with Catherine the Great. In this agreement, she would provide 20,000 Russian troops to the British to help them win the war. Kieran is given the mission to go to Russia, win the trust of Catherine, and convince her not to join forces with the British.
As in Randall's other screenplays, Braveheart, Pearl Harbor, and We Were Soldiers, Kieran is a strong, courageous leading character with conviction and integrity. Randall believes that Kieran embodies the best of the other characters he has written about because he fights for his country, sacrifices for the people he loves, and believes in his heart that all men deserve to be free.
Randall's father was a giant in Randall's life. Sadly, his father passed away on September 11, 2001 (in a hospital, not due to the 9/11 tragedy). He was a true role model for Randall and an inspiration for his characters. Randall believes his father's influence lives on in Randall's life. Though there has been grief, for Randall there is much joy in remembering his father. Randall reveals that what made his father a real man was that he had the heart to face his enemies and the wisdom to recognize that the greatest battles were within himself.
Writing Love and Honor has truly been a labor of love for Randall. He started writing it in 1984, before he had a career in film writing, and it took him four years before he had 1,600 pages of a manuscript. Then he put it on the shelf and started work as a television writer and producer at Stephen J. Cannell Productions, co-creating several broadcast series. After this Randall wrote a couple of novels. He then started working on the screenplay for Love and Honor, which was his first screenplay, in the early 1990s.
Even though it has taken him more than 20 years to complete, Randall thinks that working on Love and Honor has helped develop him as a writer and has been worth every step of the journey. What has motivated him in the long process to tell this story is the respect he has for our Founding Fathers and the ordinary citizens that built America -- what they went through so that we could have the freedoms we have today.
Randall believes America's leaders should lead by an example of honor and
love. He recently talked to a candidate for the American vice presidency.
He told the candidate that he would like to be able to point to any one of
America's elected leaders and tell his sons, "That's how you should be."
Randall thinks leaders should lead by example. Also, he believes that no matter
what political party we affiliate with, we must unite in our hearts. This
is the only way we can respect our differences. Nothing can break us down,
and that is how God made us.
A NOBLE CALL
Randall Wallace was born in Jackson, Tenn. Then he moved to Memphis where he has his earliest recollections of writing. His grandmother owned a country store. Randall stayed in the back of the store with a makeshift desk made out of pigfeed bags. He wrote stories while eavesdropping on the farmers that came in.
He also remembers in second grade that he entered a poetry contest. His teacher did not turn in his entry; it was so good she thought Randall had plagiarized it! This gave him confidence early on that he was a good writer.
His faith was a major influence on his writing. He grew up in a strong, Southern Baptist home and remembers being in church 10 hours a week and attending all the tent revivals. Through his faith, Randall came to understand the power of the narrative. Jesus taught by telling stories, and Randall has looked at how Jesus always told stories.
Faith has always been important in Randall's life. At Duke University he struggled with knowing how he could live his life as a “true believer.” Upon graduation, all of his friends were going into traditional forms of ministry, but when Randall talked with one of his college advisors, his advisor told Randall that he could serve God just as legitimately as a writer. Randall's friends told him that the noblest calling is whatever God's calling was on his life, and God called Randall to be a writer.
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