'Christmas Candle' to Become New 'Holiday Classic'

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"The Christmas Candle," an inspiring novel from international, best-selling author Max Lucado, is now on the big screen.

The all-star cast is getting rave reviews, and critics predict the film will become a new holiday classic.

John Stephenson is the director of the film, which is set in a simpler time in England.

"It's is all set in the Industrial Revolution, which is a really important part of the film because things are changing," Stephenson explained. "The old ways are giving way to the new."
      
Samantha Barks, best known for her work in the film "Les Miserables," plays opposite Hans Matheson from "Clash of the Titans" and "Sherlock Holmes."

"My character Emily lives in a village, a very religious village," Barks explained. "And they have their hopes wrapped up in the belief in this Christmas candle, miracle candle.  And she doesn't believe in any of it."

Hans Matheson said, "I play David Richmond, and he is man with very mistaken ideas. This is due the fact that he lost his wife and his child.  And there is a sort of hidden anger in him towards God and he has this unanswered question that God never answered his prayers."

Matheson's character is a minister, who has been called to lead a church in a tiny village.

Tom Newman, a producer on the film, described the Richmond character, saying "This reverend has a secret. he no longer believes in miracles."

"And he is thrust into a town of miracle believing folks," he continued. "And that is kind of the backdrop from which the story plays."
      
Newman and his fellow filmmakers say there were miracles in the very making of this movie. Those miracles include landing singing sensation Susan Boyle for her big screen debut. It is a role that was actually written with her in mind.
 
In describing the story and her attraction to the character of Eleanor Hopewell, Boyle said, "It is a story that inspires me in that you never give up on your dreams; you never stop believing in miracles. Because of what happened to me, I will always believe in miracles."

There is a message of hope throughout the film.

Newman says he wants audience to realize, "We are not in this alone. And we can better for one another. And when we are in need, God is there to help us as well."

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Efrem Graham

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Efrem Graham is an award-winning journalist, who comes to CBN News from the ABC owned and operated station in Toledo, Ohio.  He received his master's degree from the Columbia University Journalism School. He also holds a bachelor's degree in English Literature from the Richard Stockton College of New Jersey.  Follow Efrem on Twitter @EfremGraham and "like" him at Facebook.com/EfremGrahamCBN.