Asbury-Produced Films Land Distribution Deals
WILMORE, Ky. — Every year, Asbury University’s Media Communications and Theater & Cinema Performance programs produce a departmental film with cast and crew comprised of University staff and students. This year, however, Asbury is celebrating a new milestone as two University-produced films — “Faith, Love & Chocolate” and “Nazareth” — will be distributed on international cable television.
“Nazareth,” described as “a comedy about a family finding its place and finding each other” (IMDb) is Asbury’s first distribution deal. The film will be shown on DirectTV and translated into Spanish for distribution in Central and South America. The script was written by Dr. Jim Shores and Dr. Carol Anderson (both Asbury University professors), with Asbury alumnus Aaron Bohn ’15.
“We’re really grateful to everyone who worked on the project,” Shores said. “It was a great group effort and I’m glad to see the fruit of it come together.”
In addition to a cast and crew of students and faculty, the film stars actor Doug Jones (“Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” “Pan’s Labyrinth,”) and actress Nancy Stafford (“Matlock,” “Christmas for a Dollar”). “Nazareth” has won both a Vega Digital Silver Award and Ava Digital Platinum Award.
“I am incredibly excited for this unique opportunity,” said Bryce Hockema ’18, a Theatre & Cinema Performance and Media Communication major who played roles in both films. “I feel incredibly thankful for each director, crew and cast member that played such a big part in bringing these two stories to life. I never could have imagined that I would have the opportunity to be in two distributed films in the four years I had in college. I feel blessed and thankful and excited to see where these successes will lead me in the years to come.”
“Faith, Love & Chocolate,” written and directed by Jeff Day, Professor of Theatre & Cinema Performance at Asbury University, received a distribution deal with American Cinema International. ACI handles films for networks including Hallmark and Lifetime. “Faith, Love & Chocolate” will also be distributed on television in France, Germany, Spain and Latin America. This film was a joint production between Asbury University and Lucky Day Studios (co-founded by Day).
“Completing a film is a huge feat in and of itself, but completing it and getting distribution is really amazing,” Day said. “What makes it even more special is the fact that so many students worked together to create a piece of art. It’s fantastic for the program in that it displays a culture of excellent work and encourages our students to go out in the world and do the same thing.”
Asbury students, faculty, staff and graduates will produce another film this coming summer: “Damaged Goods” (working title), a film about redemption and forgiveness, written and directed by former Asbury University Professor and Hollywood veteran Doug Smart who worked on shows including “The Golden Girls,” “Newhart,” “Benson” and many more.
— by Cathryn Lien ’18
To learn more about Asbury University’s Media Communication program, visit: asbury.edu/mediacom.