Faith, Media & Culture

Here are today’s dispatches from the crossroads of faith, media and culture.

1. The Way premiere to benefit Walkabout Foundation. Tomorrow’s premiere of the excellent faith-themed Emilio Estevez film (starring his father Martin Sheen) in New York City will offer further proof of the positive power of cinema via a special screening to benefit the WF charity dedicated to funding research aimed at finding a cure for paralysis and to donating wheelchairs to people in need all over the world. Former President Bill Clinton will keynote the event

The Walkabout Foundation was founded by Carolina and Luis Gonzalez-Bunster. Tomorrow’s event comes about after Carolina and Luis’ father Rolando had a chance meeting with Emilio Estevez and David Alexanian (producer of The Way) on a plane. They got to talking about the Camino de Santiago (aka the Way of St. James), the Pyrenees pilgrimage that forms the basis for the film (and where it was shot). Rolando recounted how his family walked the trail to launch the Walkabout Foundation the same year that Emilio filmed The Way there.

Luis, BTW, is paralyzed from the chest down and is apparently the first person ever to conquer the Camino using only the strength of his arms.  Moved by Luis’ story and the dedication and good work of his family, Emilio and David decided to turn the screening into a fundraiser for their Walkabout Foundation.

“I am so honored that The Way can be part of this incredible event, and that this screening will benefit the Walkabout Foundation,” Estevez says in a statement.  “The work of the foundation truly embodies the spirit of our film, encouraging people to live life to the fullest despite all obstacles. Everyone involved with The Way is so proud to have this platform to debut our film, and to bring awareness to the important work done by the Walkabout Foundation”

In response to the gesture, Carolina Gonzalez-Bunster replies “We are incredibly honored and proud to be involved with the premiere of  The Way and we are very grateful to Martin Sheen and Emilio Estevez for supporting our cause and sharing with us their beautiful new film. We are very excited to have President Clinton attend and speak, adding his invaluable support to what promises to be a memorable and magical evening.”

The event marks the conclusion Martin and Emilio’s cross-country bus tour promoting the film. The cost of a ticket to the event is $300, or, in other words, the price of one RoughRider wheelchair (including delivery and assembly). If you’d like tickets, you’re asked to go to 100% of the proceeds for the night will support the good work of the Walkabout Foundation.

The Lord, indeed, works in mysterious ways.

2. Noah gets the green light. From Deadline: Paramount and New Regency have formalized a deal to partner on Noah, the biblical epic that Darren Aronofsky will direct as his follow-up to the Oscar-nominated smash Black Swan…The film is being fast tracked in hopes of getting it into production by next spring.

Encourage one another and build each other up – 1 Thessalonians 5:11

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