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Producer/Actor David A.R. White Believes God Still Not Dead

David shares his passion behind not only acting in, but producing the new movie, “God’s Not Dead 2.” Read Transcript


When "God's Not Dead" was released in 2014,

it became an instant blockbuster.

In fact, it's one of the most profitable movies of all time.

It told the story of a student who stood up

to his agnostic teacher.

And now in the sequel, the teacher is the hero.

Take a look.

I hate what people like your client stand for.

We're going to prove once and for all that God is dead.

I gave an honest answer to a student's question.

I'm not going to be afraid to say the name Jesus.

They want to make an example of you.

So what's the good news?

I don't like to lose.

I would rather stand with God and be judged by the world,

than staying with the world and be judged by God.

God bless you.

Careful, or you might end up on trial.

With us now is David A.R. White.

He's a producer for "God's Not Dead, 2,"

and he also reprises the role of Reverend Dave in the film.

Good to have you here.

Thank you.

Thanks for having me.

Were you surprised at the success of the first film?

Sure, yeah, I don't think anybody could've or ever knows

that.

INTERVIEWER: You roll the dice.

Exactly, I mean that's kind of the way it is.

INTERVIEWER: --and pray!

Yeah, exactly, you pray.

Obviously we did a lot of pre-screenings

in the churches and grassroots marketing.

And everybody got behind it.

But, you know, it's, by far, the biggest span for generations,

from young kids to older folks, that I've ever

done for a movie.

The teacher winds up in court, and that's a switch.

How did that whole concept come to be?

Well, the themes of them, we thought,

if we get a chance to do three of these, the first one,

of course, is about the existence of God.

The second one is about Jesus Christ and who is He.

Is He a man, myth, or messiah?

And then the third one would be talking

about the inspired word of God.

So we always kind of knew that was

our blueprint going into it.

And then in the first one, of course, we have a male lead,

and we wanted to flip it and then

also show it from more of a teacher's perspective.

Well let's talk about that female lead,

because it's Sabrina the Teenage Witch.

I mean, how'd that happened?

I know.

The irony of that, right?

There's a lot of irony in this.

But I think Melissa actually has come out

more and more about her faith, more vocal about it.

And we just felt like she was a perfect fit for this,

and she just did such a great job

and then was passionate about the project and the script.

And we always pray who's supposed to be in these films.

I was just going to say, you know, when I watch a film,

I always wonder, how do they decide who the person who's

going to play this role is?

How much time and effort and joint discussion

goes into that?

Well, we have great casting directors, for one thing.

They've cast almost every movie that we've ever done--

Billy DaMota and Dee Vise.

And we thank them.

But ultimately, we pray first and foremost

to see who the Lord brings in and who

He wants in these films.

And He does amazing things.

A lot of the people end up rejuvenating their walk

with the Lord.

Some of them become believers, who

had never known Christ before.

And so you just never know how the Lord will work in it.

Well, David, I'm sure there are people

in both the Christian community and the non-faith-based

community who would say, well, these films are preaching

to the choir.

I mean you're just affirming to people

of faith a like-mindedness.

But you're talking about results that show otherwise,

that there are people who maybe have not been people of faith,

who are made to think by this.

Again the stories that come in on the first one

have been incredible, from there was

a girl who tweeted me-- she was 15, I think,

and she'd been cutting herself.

And she had that addiction, and she couldn't get free from it.

And she said, when she went to see the first one,

she felt God's love and His presence for the first time,

that she thought she could be able to overcome that.

It was like the first step in it.

From stories like that to atheists

that have gone to the film and started opening the Bible

and looking into it.

And so there's no doubt about it;

we make these films first and foremost

for the church to encourage people in their faith

so they can stand up.

And I think that's one of the reasons why the first one was

so successful is that Christians don't normally have something,

especially in the theaters, that say believe and be inspired

in your faith.

And in this one, it also opens up

discussions about religious liberties,

about religious freedoms, things that the silent--

There's a line in the movie about the silent majority.

Well, we should just be the silent majority.

And I think that's the opposite of what we should be doing.

We need to speak out more.

So when someone goes to see this film,

because it's being released on Friday,

April the 1st-- we'll talk about that in a minute.

But when they go to see it, what do

you want the take away to be?

All of that, but also the biggest thing

is that God has a specific purpose

and a plan for your life.

And He is real, and there is hope in Him.

So April the 1st.

April 1st.

Did you plan that this film would be released

on that particular day?

Or talk a little bit about the irony of that.

Well, you know, it's funny because the first one,

they actually showed it at an atheist convention later on.

And the irony is that however God uses it, you know?

It's His Holy Spirit on it that takes it to places,

and it's not us.

I mean we make the best movie that we can do.

But ultimately, it's His spirit that pushes it out.

And so this time it comes nationally on this holiday,

which is April Fool's.

I didn't even know there was a national Atheist Day.

And I don't know that we actually planned it,

but the irony of that is that it comes out on that day,

just to say thank you and also to speak the truth

and shine the light in a dark world.

So what you mentioned earlier about the vision of the three,

does that mean that the third one is in the works?

Well, I'm going to tell you something, Terry, is

that if you sit through the credits,

there's a little Easter egg at the end that kind of sets up

for the next one.

I always sit through the credits.

OK, so a lot of people don't.

A lot of people bolt for the doors.

But on this one, it's worth sitting through,

and there's a little Easter egg there that sets it up--

that might set it up.

We'll see.

Don't you think-- here you are someone

who has been involved in a movie that has meat and the message

to it.

Don't you think that all people, even people who

profess not to be, have a hunger inside of them to know more,

to understand more?

Movies like this, I think, cause you to think.

Yeah absolutely.

You know the beautiful thing about going to a movie theater

is that one allows that movie to take them to places that they

would not even allow their best friend to take them.

There's something that happens when the light goes down

and when that story comes up.

And it's just you identifying with those characters.

And I think it's been needing--

We've been playing in cinema for a while.

But two years ago, it was called the "Year of the Bible."

And it's exciting to see these type of movies going out

more and more, and truth and hope being

proclaimed through the cinema.

Amen.

And you're a big part of that.

We say, thank you.

It's always a pleasure, as a believer,

to see something wonderful on the screen.

We really appreciate it.

Listen, if you want to see "God's Not Dead, 2,"

your wait is almost over.

Celebrate national Atheist Day by attending the movie.

It opens nationwide.

DAVID WHITE: Oh, hey, let me get you one of these.

Here you go.

OK, what is this?

I want to give you that.

Oh, I love this.

OK, I'll wear it to the movie.

And check out the website, too.

And you can get those and bring them to your church

and get your church involved.

That's right, and start it on April 1st.

It's rated PG.

David, thank you for being with us,

and thank you for what you do.

Thank you so much.

Great to have you here.

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