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Faith, Media & Culture

Faith, Media & Culture

Bio

John W. Kennedy, a practicing Catholic, is the founder and Dir. of Development of The Creative Universe Entertainment™, a media consultation and development company focusing on the creation, development and support of high-quality mainstream entertainment that upholds positive timeless values such as faith in a loving God, kindness, forgiveness, gratitude, tolerance, wisdom, courage, self-confidence tempered with humility, personal responsibility and the all-important ability to resist hypocrisy and laugh at our own human foibles.

Current projects include "Bryant Park" (an uplifting romantic-comedy), "The Tommie Scott Story" (based on the inspirational biography) and "Photo Finish" (a sci-fi TV pilot). He has written over 100 children's novels based on episodes of the Cartoon Network series "Ben 10", "Ben 10: Alien Force", "Ben 10: Ultimate Alien", "Ben 10: Omniverse" and "Generator Rex" among others. He also writes Beliefnet’s "Faith, Media & Culture" blog and has discussed the topic as a guest on several radio broadcasts.

Previously, he has produced successful news and talk programming for CNN, Fox News, Pax TV and SiriusXM. Over the years, his notable interviews and/or bookings have included such diverse personalities as Sean Astin, Corbin Bernsen, Brian Bird, James Brolin, Kirk Cameron, Deepak Chopra, Sandy Duncan, Roma Downey, Robert Duvall, Emilio Estevez, Mick Fleetwood, Andy Garcia, Carla Gugino, movie-star-turned-Catholic nun Mother Dolores Hart, Patricia Heaton, Lee Iacocca, Robert Kennedy, Jr., Michael Landon, Jr., Pattie Mallete (Justin Bieber’s mother), B.B. King, Colin Powell, Dennis Prager, Rick Santorum, Martin Sheen, Kevin Sorbo, Della Reese, Christopher Reeve, Robert and Robert A. Schuller, Sylvester Stallone, Jon Voight, Martha Williamson and countless others.

Specialties: Script Writing, Movie/TV Novelizations & Adaptations, TV Content Creation and Development, Creative Consultation. Producing and Booking News and Talk shows

What’s UP @ UP + Lorette Lynn Gospel Festival stars named + God questions answered in 140 characters or less

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. More Love on UP. Building on the solid ratings success of last year’s UP original film Love Finds You in Sugarcreek, UP TV will continue its premiere Love Finds […]

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TV Movie Review: “The Music in Me” tonight on UP TV

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. The Music in Me airs on UP TV tonight (4/12) @ 7:00 PM (ET). The musical drama stars singer/songwriter Debbie Gibson (who wrote and performs the film’s original song Promises) […]

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2015 Christopher Award honorees announced

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Recognizing the positive power of storytelling. The 66th annual Christopher Awards will be presented at a gala in New York on May 13, 2015. The prestigious prizes recognize media […]

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Eight under-the-radar faith/media innovators you should know about

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Making a difference. With NBC’s A.D. The Bible Continues off to a solid start in the ratings, few would dispute that Mark Burnett and Roma Downey are at the […]

“Beyond the Mask”: Faith-themed period adventure with a revolutionary superhero

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Beyond the Mask premieres in theaters tonight (4/6) Synopsis (from the film’s website): The leading mercenary for the British East India Company, Will Reynolds has just been double-crossed and […]

Quality Easter TV: “A.D” premieres on NBC + “Gospel of Mary Magdalene” on CNN

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. A.D. The Bible Continues premieres tomorrow night (Easter Sunday) @ 9:00 PM (ET) on NBC. Synopsis: Epic dramatization of the Book of Acts begins with the crucifixion and Resurrection […]

“A.D.” cast members talk about bringing the epic story of the Early Church to NBC

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Jesus, Peter and Paul. Yesterday I posted my conversation with producers Mark Burnett and Roma Downey at an event earlier this week promoting A.D. The Bible Continues, their new […]

Mark Burnett and Roma Downey talk about bringing “A.D.” to TV this Easter Sunday

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. TV series tackles the history of the Early Church. A.D. The Bible Continues premieres this Easter Sunday at 9:00 PM (ET) on NBC. The series is the latest from […]

Coming Attractions: “Dovekeepers” on CBS + encores for “Killing Jesus” and “Four Blood Moons”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. The Dovekeepers airs tonight (3/31) and tomorrow night (4/1) @ 9:00 PM on CBS. Mark Burnett and Roma Downey go broadcast. Sure, Burnett has Shark Tank (ABC), Survivor (CBS) and […]

TV Reviews: “Killing Jesus” on NatGeo + HBO’s “Going Clear” doc exposes charges against Scientology

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Killing Jesus airs this Sunday (Palm Sunday) @ 8:00 (ET) on National Geographic Channel. Synopsis: The story of the political intrigue that led to the crucifixion of Jesus.  Screenplay […]

Ted McGinley reflects on faith, the meaning of the Cross and playing a pastor in “Do You Believe?”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. These are Happy Days for Ted McGinley. Pure Flix’s newest faith film, Do You Believe? debuted at No. 6 at the box office last weekend. With an estimated weekend […]

Coming Attractions: “Holderness Family” on TV + “Brother’s Keepers” and “War Room” in theaters

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. TV: The Holderness Family airs on UP TV tomorrow night (Thursday, 3/26) @ 10:00 PM (ET). Synopsis: Billed as the “first family of viral video,” The Holderness Family is […]

Muslim actor Haaz Sleiman on portraying Jesus in NatGeo’s “Killing Jesus”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. A Muslim perspective on Jesus. I attended the red-carpet event for Killing Jesus at Lincoln Center last night. The film, shot in Morocco and based on the bestselling book […]

Film event explores the history and possible theological significance of “Four Blood Moons”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Rising in theaters for one night only tonight (3/23): Four Blood Moons Four Blood Moons is playing in about 700 locations across the country tonight only. The film starts […]

CNN doc goes in search of “The Secret Brother of Jesus”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Finding Jesus: Faith, Fact and Forgery (Episode 4) – The Secret Brother of Jesus airs Sunday (3/15) @ 9:00 PM ET on CNN. Synopsis (from a CNN press release): […]

TV Review: UP TV’s “Noah’s Ark”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Noah’s Ark airs Sunday (3/22) @ 7:00 PM (ET) on UP TV. Synopsis: Noah’s Ark is the story of Noah, an ancient farmer and family man, who is instructed by […]

Producers of “God’s Not Dead” ask “Do You Believe?”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. In theaters this weekend: Do You Believe? Opens Friday 3/20. Synopsis (from the film’s website): A dozen different souls—all moving in different directions, all longing for something more. As […]

Top 5 Faith and Media stories for Wednesday, March 18, 2015

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. 1. Hallmark execs create in-house production company. Crown Media Family Networks, home of Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Movies & Mysteries, has announced the launch of Crown Media Productions, an […]

St. Patrick’s Breastplate

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Everything Sacred. This is a scene from 1997-98 TV series Nothing Sacred.  The excellent series about Chicago parish priests was, IMHO, misnamed out of a misguided attempt to sound […]

Coming Attractions: CNN doc investigates “The Gospel of Judas”, “Drop Box” returns, film drama asks “Do You Believe?”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Finding Jesus: Faith, Fact and Forgery (Episode 3) – The Gospel of Judas airs Sunday (3/15) @ 9:00 ET on CNN. Mini-Review: As Professor Nicola Denzey Lewis of Brown […]

Irish priest and YouTube sensation Ray Kelly debuts US album just in time for St. Pat’s Day

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. The Year of Living Musically. It’s been about a year now since for Father Ray Kelly of St. Brigid’s Catholic Church in the small manufacturing town of Oldcastle, Ireland captured […]

Actress Shari Rigby talks about her “Beautifully Flawed” life

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. The beauty of imperfection. Shari Rigby began her career as a successful model and is now a sort-after actress whose roles include parts in such quality faith-themed movies as […]

CNN goes in search of “The Bones of John the Baptist”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Finding Jesus: Faith, Fact and Forgery (Episode 2) – The Bones of John the Baptist air tonight (3/8) on CNN @ 9:00 PM (ET) Mini-Review: Seems to me to […]

Ellie Holcomb celebrates another year in “The Sun”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. It was/is a very good year. As 2015 gains momentum, so too is the career of singer/songwriter Ellie Holcomb whose debut album As Sure As The Sun made Buzzfeed’s […]

Colbert on faith + Viewers find CNN’s “Finding Jesus” + Where’s the “Believe Me” on climate change?

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Stephen Colbert reflects on his Catholic faith. The late-night comedian visited America House hosted by America Magazine Editor-at-Large James Martin. (h/t Big Hollywood) Finding Jesus finds an audience. James […]

Coming attractions “Finding Jesus”, “Drop Box” and “Little Boy”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Finding Jesus: Faith, Fact and Forgery premieres tonight (3/1) on CNN @ 9:00 PM (ET) Mini-Review: Tonight’s premiere of the six-part CNN original series looks at the investigations into […]

UP preparing “Angels in the Snow” for Christmas 2015

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Planning ahead. Production began this week in Vancouver, British Columbia in Canada on the Christmas-themed Angels in the Snow. The UP Premiere Movie stars Kristy Swanson (who played Buffy […]

Mat Kearney sings about childlike faith and the grace of surrendering control

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture Saying it in song. Mat Kearney has grown a following by writing and performing heartfelt songs that are life-affirming. His most recent album, 2011′s Young Love, debuted at #1 […]

Author Joe Battaglia talks about “The Politically Incorrect Jesus”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Living Boldly in a Culture of Unbelief. That the subtitle of The Politically Incorrect Jesus (BroadStreet Publishing), the new book from journalist and Renaissance Communications President Joe Battaglia which […]

UP TV’s “Dancer and the Dame” is a refreshing, family-friendly cop comedy

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Dancer and the Dame airs tonight (2/22) at 7:00 PM (ET) on UP TV. Synopsis (from the UP TV website): Down-and-out police detective Rick Dancer, struggling with a personal […]

Cantinas Entertainment/Mission Pictures deal seen as a plus for positive faith-themed film distribution

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. A new Mission for Bond. The recent announcement that Cantinas Entertainment has acquired Mission Pictures, the inspirational/faith-themed film distribution company co-founded by Cindy Bond, is seen by both sides […]

Producers Mark Burnett, Roma Downey join cast members in preview of “A.D. The Bible Continues”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. NBC releases epic trailer for A.D. The Bible Continues. The three-minute promo features clips from the series as well commentary from cast members and  executive producers Mark Burnett and […]

Pax Press Agency covers Catholic work at the U.N. in Geneva

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. The Church in the world. While the Catholic Church is no stranger to news headlines (for both good and not-so-good reasons), little is known by the general public about […]

Book Review: “The Politically Incorrect Jesus” + Score one for “Old Fashioned” romance

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. A book that is as compelling as it is urgent. I just finished reading The Politically Incorrect Jesus by my friend Joe Battaglia. As the founder and president of […]

Rachel Boston opens “A Gift of Miracles” on HM&M

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. The world premiere of A Gift of Miracles airs tonight (2/15) @ 9:00 PM (ET) on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries.The uplifting film stars Rachel Boston (Lifetime’s Witches of East […]

Inspirational “Where Hope Grows” gets release date

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Roadside Attractions and Godspeed Pictures have announced May 15, 2015 as the theatrical release of Where Hope Grows.  The film is a winner of the 2014 Heartland Film Festival […]

Romantic rivals: Rik Swartzwelder’s “Old Fashioned” competes with “Fifty Shades of Grey” for Valentine’s box office love

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is […]

NBC releases “A.D. The Bible Continues” music video

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Newsboys deliver A.D. promo for NBC. The network has just released this music video to promote A.D. (now officially titled A.D. The Bible Continues), Mark Burnett and Roma Downey’s […]

Writer-director Corbin Bernsen finds a well-matched creative partner in “Christian Mingle”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Christian Mingle airs on UP TV on Sunday (2/8) @ 7:00 PM ET. Synopsis: Despite her own lukewarm Christian faith, Gwyneth Hayden (Lacey Chabert), a talented ad executive searching […]

Weekend TV movies: “Megachurch Murder” + “Christian Mingle” + “Cloudy with a Chance of Love”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Megachurch Murder airs on Lifetime on Saturday (2/7) @ 8:00 PM ET. Synopsis: Said to be inspired by Shakespeare’s Hamlet, Megachurch Murder tells the story of turmoil in a  […]

ASPiRE premieres Season 2 of “Laff Mobb’s We Got Next” tonight + Basketball as a way of life

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Season 2 of Laff Mobb’s We Got Next premieres tonight 2/4 @ 10:00 PM (ET) on ASPiRE. Billed at an original weekly “clean stand-up” comedy/reality series, Laff Mobb’s We […]

Why filmmaker/human rights advocate Jason Scott Jones takes abortion and other life issues personally

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Life matters. Jason Scott Jones was the emcee of a Students for Live of America event in association with the recent March for Life in Washington D.C.* Though the […]

“Exodus” encore + Would Jesus have been politically correct?

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Exodus success. Patterns of Evidence: The Exodus, the one-night documentary theater event I told you about last week played to packed houses across the country Monday night — leading […]

From ring to screen: Champion boxer Manny Pacquiao’s faith-filled story told in new documentary

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Larger than life. Manny Pacquiao may be just over 5’6″ inches tall but anyone familiar the champion fighter (the first and only boxer to win world titles in eight […]

DVD review: “Welcome to Inspiration” delivers a great sermon in a mediocre movie

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Out on DVD today (1/20): Welcome to Inspiration Synopsis: After their car breaks down, a freelance journalist (Britt George) and his wife (Whitney Goin) spend time in a small […]

National movie theater event explores the truth of the Biblical story of the Exodus

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture.  Is Biblical history really history? Ridley Scott’s fictionalized Exodus: Gods and Kings may not have had the box office legs it backers had hoped but those interested in the […]

Former TLC programming exec Amy Winter joins UP TV

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Moving on UP. UP TV has announced that Amy Winter will join the network on February 1 as executive vice president and general manager, a newly created position. She […]

Bud Paxson, Pax TV network creator dies

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Passing of a visionary. Lowell “Bud” Paxson, the co-creator of Home Shopping Network who later amassed a trove of TV stations and launched the family-friendly network Pax TV, had […]

Top five faith/family media stories: January 12, 2015

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. 1. Christian retailer gets into movie-making biz.  Family Christian Entertainment (FCE), the recently-launched sister company of  Family Christian Stores, has announced its first project. Production of 90 Minutes in […]

How an unlikely friendship transcended racial divides and led to the book and upcoming movie “Where a Man Stands”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Another hit for T.D. Jakes? The famed preacher/author/producer whose inspirational film credits include the 2014 hit Heaven is for Real Where a Man Stands by  Carter Paysinger and Steven […]

America takes the Bates! New reality show premieres to strong ratings for UP

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. The premiere episode of the family reality series Bringing Up Bates on New Year’s Day was UP TV’s  strongest original telecast ever for the network among women in both […]

Shazzy New Year! Entrepreneur Kristy McCarley puts a Christian spin on the annual exercise resolution

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Hip-Hoping you a healthier New Year.  As a wife, mother and businesswoman, Kristy McCarley understands that no matter how sincere a New Year’s resolution to exercise is, finding the […]

TV Review: “A Girl’s Best Friend”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. A Girl’s Best Friend airs tomorrow (Sunday, 1/4) @ 7:00 PM (ET) on UP TV. Synopsis:  Polka-Dot, an 11-year-old girl with a quirky devotion to Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn, […]

The “Unbroken” power of forgiveness + TV Review: “Bringing Up Bates”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Happy New Year! Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Unbroken smashes industry projections — earning an astounding $47.3 million over Christmas weekend. As Big Hollywood’s John Nolte notes, producer/director Angelina Jolie’s telling of the Christian-themed […]

For KING & COUNTRY performs “A.D.” video + “Joy” to the malls

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. They will know we are Christians…By Our Love. For KING & COUNTRY performs the beautiful hymn (which it would be nice if we could live by) in a new […]

“Unbroken” legacy: Luke Zamperini talks about the Christian faith his father passed on to him

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. The son also rises.  Louis Zamperini died of pneumonia on July 2, 2014 at the age of 97 — just about 70 years after he was originally classified as […]

Will “Old Fashioned” romance fly in 2015? USA Today suggests yes

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Thumbs up! That’s the word from USA Today on Rene Gutteridge’s  novelization of Old Fashioned which has been released in advance the upcoming faith-themed film on Valentine’s Day.  The […]

In 2015: “Exodus” doc plus Ben Franklin in faith-themed adventure + Hallmark’s record holiday ratings

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Coming Attractions: One night event: Patterns of Evidence: Exodus to run in select theaters across the US Monday, January 19 @ 7:00 PM local time. Whether or not Ridley […]

Christian singer Melissa Greene on NBC’s “The Sing-Off”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Veteran Christian music artist Melissa Greene will appear on NBC’s two-hour season premiere holiday special of its popular musical competition series The Sing-Off. Green will perform Ghost with the female group Timothy’s […]

Hallmark’s “Best Christmas Party Ever”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Best Christmas Party Ever air tomorrow night (12/13) @ 8:00 PM (ET) on Hallmark Channel. Synopsis (from the Hallmark Channel website): With the holiday season at hand, young party […]

“Unbroken” poised to be breakout hit + A Merry Christmas at Hallmark + Viral video family in UP pilot

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Why Unbroken could be a game changer.  Not known for any sort of religiosity Angelina Jolie is said to have  formed a deep bond with the real-life Christian hero […]

“Little Boy” theatrical trailer released + Odyssey Networks to expand “On Scripture -The Bible”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Little Boy/big hit? Time will tell. The film, from executive producers Roma Downey & Mark Burnett, is set to premiere in theaters on February 27th. The couple are probably […]

TV Reviews: UP’s “Marry Us for Christmas” + Hallmark Channel’s “Christmas at Cartwright’s”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Warm and believable Marry Us for Christmas airs tonight (12/7) @ 7:00 PM (ET) on UP TV.  Synopsis (from the UP press release): In the sequel to last year’s […]

Composer/performer Keith Getty is celebrating an Irish Christmas at venues across the USA

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. A green Christmas. Born in Northern Ireland, musician/composer Keith Getty, along with his wife Kristyn, is known for  is well-known as a master of theologically-astute modern hymns, a reverent genre […]

See “Vatican Museums 3D” in theaters + Riding high, UP expands into scripted series + Catholic Channel at 8

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Your chance to tour The Vatican Museums.  If you never have been able to visit Rome and have wondered what it would be like to witness the awe-inspiring beauty […]

When the power of music meets the power of the Rosary

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. CD of the decade. The Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist scored a chart-topping Billboard hit with the 2013 release of Mater Eucharistiae. Now, the sister back […]

First Look: NBC’s A.D.

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Saga of the Early Church. Executive producers Mark Burnett and Roma Downey have just released a sneak peek of A.D., the highly anticipated follow-up to of their smash-hit History Channel miniseries The […]

“Signed, Sealed” returns delivering Christmas charm and heart + A chat with series creator Martha Williamson

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. “A letter can restore a relationship or change the world. Half of the New Testament is made up of letters, mostly from Paul, but also from Peter, James, John […]

This weekend: “Little Hope was Arson” on VOD + “A Royal Christmas” on TV

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Little Hope Was Arson premiered on demand (via iTunes, Amazon, Google Play and Vudu) and at New York City’s Cinema Village  theater yesterday (11/21). The powerful documentary is set […]

DVD and VOD release dates announced for Tyler Perry’s “Hell Hath No Fury…” and “Left Behind”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Tyler Perry’s Hell Hath No Fury Like a Woman Scorned – The Play arrives on DVD, Digital HD and Video on Demand on Tuesday (11/25). Inspired by a successful […]

Rita Cosby celebrates 50th birthday with a star-studded Wounded Warriors benefit

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. (Rita Cosby/Photo by Nicole Vranjican for The New York Observer) A generous spirit and an important cause. Today (11/18) is Rita Cosby’s 50th birthday and, it’s safe to say, […]

TV Reviews: Christmas arrives early via Hallmark Channel’s “Northpole” and UP’s”Paper Angels”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Can’t wait for Christmas? Then set your TV and/or DVR on Hallmark Channel and UP TV. While, except for a few classic perennials (i.e. A Charlie Brown Christmas, Rudolph […]

“Bible” producers aid Mid-East Christians + Two more for T.D. Jakes + An “Old Fashioned” challenge

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Help for persecuted Christians. Variety reports that producers Mark Burnett and Roma Downey (The Bible, Son of God) have joined with the Arlington, Virginia-based Institute for Global Engagement to […]

Kirk Cameron talks about “Saving Christmas”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. ‘Tis the season. Kirk Cameron’s film comedy Saving Christmas opens in about 400 theaters across the country this weekend (11/14) for a planned two-week limited engagement. For info on […]

Christian evangelist Luis Palau on how God can use the media to accomplish great things

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Preaching through action. 2015 is shaping up at as big year for Argentinian-born Christian evangelist Luis Palau as his Portland, Oregon-based Luis Palau Association brings its CityServe & CityFest […]

UP TV’s “Naughty and Nice” (starring Haylie Duff) is a little good, a little not so good

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Naughty and Nice airs tomorrow night (Sunday, 11/9) @ 7:00 PM (ET) on UP TV. Synopsis (from the UP press release): It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas […]

November book picks

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Positive reading. Here are a pair of noteworthy books that have been sent to me recently which I think you may actually enjoy. The Hobbit Party: The Vision of […]

NBC’s “A.D.” cast announced

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Epic casting. NBC has announced the cast of A.D., the highly anticipated follow-up to the 2013 ratings blockbuster miniseries The Bible  that aired on The History Channel and which garnered over 100 […]

Hollywood A-listers to star in faith-themed “Same Kind of Difference as Me”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. All-star cast for Same Kind of Different as Me. Principal photography has begun in Jackson, Mississippi on the Paramount Pictures film starring Greg Kinnear,  Djimon Hounsou,  Renee Zellweger and […]

Sarah Carter gets a cowboy for Christmas as Hallmark Channel launches its annual holiday countdown

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. One Starry Christmas airs tomorrow night (11/1) @ 8:00 PM ET on Hallmark Channel. Synopsis (from the Hallmark Channel website): Aspiring astronomy professor and Christmas enthusiast Holly (Sarah Carter) […]

Production complete on UP’s 2nd “Love Finds You” film + Hallmark to air 12 new Christmas films

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. UP TV continues Love Finds You franchise. Production has wrapped on the UP Original Movie Love Finds You In Charm, a romantic, coming-of-age drama set in Amish country, The film,  starring […]

16-year-old Juliette Turner (Jeanine’s daugher) wants you to know that “Our Presidents Rock”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. History is cool again. Even as our cultural gatekeepers seem determined to serve up American history in the darkest possible light, it’s good see our nation’s young people still […]

“Lyfe’s Journey” worth taking + Remembering Terry Keenan

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Lyfe’s Journey airs tonight (10/26) at 7:00 PM (ET) on UP TV. Synopsis: David Lyfe is a nice guy who has it all. At work, he’s a successful banking […]

“23 Blast” is a faith-themed touchdown

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. 23 Blast is in theaters now. Blind faith. Inspired by the true-life story of Travis Freeman, a star high school football player who lost his sight overnight through a […]

Film Review: “Glen Campbell…I’ll Be Me” + His wife talks about faith, his final tour and coping with Alzheimer’s

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Rhinestone Cowboy‘s final ride. The announcement of country music legend Glen Campbell 2011 Alzheimer’s diagnosis was shocking both because of the decades of affection he had built with people […]

“Little Hope Was Arson” documentary set for November release

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. True crime, true faith. Following a successful and award-winning run on the festival circuit, Little Hope Was Arson, a documentary about the quest to solve a series of ten Texas […]

TV Review: “My Boyfriends’ Dogs” on Hallmark Channel + A chat with actress Teryl Rothery

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. My Boyfriends’ Dogs airs tomorrow (10/18) @ 9:00 PM ET on Hallmark Channel. Synopsis (from the Hallmark Channel website): Bailey Daley (Erika Christensen) is a hapless young bride who […]

Catholic monks release chanting CD + “Old Fashioned” romance to face steamy “Fifty Shades of Grey” at the box office

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Melodious monks. New Camaldoli Hermitage, a community of Roman Catholic monks in California’s Big Sur, will release their album O Day of Resurrection on Tuesday, November 4th. From Jade […]

UP TV’s “Heavenly Match” is a nice idea that could use some tweaking

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Heavenly Match no match for UP’s previous offerings. Anyone who reads this blog on a regular basis knows that I tend to like movies on UP TV.  Some are […]

Two UP TV films shine spotlight on bullying

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. October is National Bullying Prevention Month. In recognition of that, UP TV is presenting two films that tackle the subject. Nowhere Safe  premieres tomorrow (10/5) at 7 PM (ET). […]

Kevin Sorbo on playing John Calvin in “Let the Lion Roar,” plans for a “God’s Not Dead” sequel and his support of the “Gosnell” movie

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Tackling Christianity’s history of anti-Semitism. Kevin Sorbo plays the role of French theologian John Calvin in Let the Lion Roar, a new docudrama that takes on the unfortunate history […]

This weekend’s faith-themed films: “The Song” falls flat while “Believe Me” hits the right notes

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Faith at the movies. The Song and Believe Me are two faith-themed movies that couldn’t be more different in terms of tone — suggesting a diversity and maturing of […]

The “Race” is on. Authors offer “Five Core Principles to Promote Peace, Freedom and the Culture of Life”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Core strength.  It’s said to be key to physical fitness. And according to Jason Scott Jones and John Zmirak — authors of The Race to Save Our Century: Five […]

“Holy Ghost” movie premiere a success + “Signed, Sealed, Delivered” Christmas movie + “Daniel Boone” on INSP

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. The Holy Ghost World Premiere Experience was a huge success. The one-time September 6th digital event—which featured a special musical appearance with Brian “Head” Welch of Korn—made it possible […]

“Mayberry” meets “Friends” at UP’s “Coffee Shop” + For Producer/Director Dave Alan Johnson “heart” beats “edge”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Coffee Shop is a warm, tasty blend of humor and romance.  The film airs this Sunday (/9/14) @ 8:00 PM (ET) on UP TV. Synopsis (per UP): Coffee Shop […]

See first 15 minutes of underrated film “The Identical” here

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. See for yourself. The Identical opened last week to, frankly, very disappointing box office numbers — disappointing to me because, as I said in my review, The Identical is […]

Updated Fall Faith/Media Preview: What’s ahead in movies, TV, music and books

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Since I originally posted the Faith, Media & Fall Preview last week, a few additions have come to my attention.  New entries are headlined in red. Prepare to be […]

“Holy Ghost” movie event tomorrow (9/6); Film a moving experience + “23 Blast” gets Christian radio support

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. “My Spirit, who is on you, will not depart from you, and my words that I have put in your mouth will always be on your lips, on the […]

“The Identical” unlike any faith-themed film you’ve seen before

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. A Star is Born. That would be Blake Rayne who headlines The Identical (opening nationwide tomorrow, 9/5) in the twin roles of fictional  ’50’s-60’s rock superstar Drexel Hemsley (read […]

Faith/Media Fall Preview: What’s ahead in movies, TV, music and books

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Prepare to be inspired! Media publications like Entertainment Weekly and others are known for compiling Fall Preview issues that focus — and laud praise upon — the latest in […]

“Giver” producers to donate 50¢ of each Labor Day ticket sale to children’s literacy campaign

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. I’m officially on a break until next Tuesday but this time-sensitive item popped into my in-box is worth noting. Giving back.  As part of its continuing efforts to promote […]

“Game” stands tall + a director to watch + Edward James Olmos and Grant Goodeve back in the TV saddle

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Touchdown! Coming on the heels of last weekend’s excellent The Giver, the quality winning streak of faith-themed films continues with When the Game Stand Tall (opening tomorrow, 8/22). Both […]

“Summer Snow” lands on UP TV

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Summer Snow on UP TV tomorrow night (8/17) @ 8:00 PM (ET) Synopsis: 8-year old Hallie Benson (Rachel Eggleston) has a heart that’s bigger than she is. She’s always […]

Support “The Giver”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. The Giver is in theaters nationwide. Synopsis: The Giver (Jeff Bridges) is designated by a future society that confuses conformity with peace to be sole bearer of the violent […]

Inside Story: How and why Walden Media and The Weinstein Company joined forces for “The Giver”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. What will you take from The Giver? As I noted in my review, The Giver — which open in theaters tomorrow (8/15) — is quite simply a great film. […]

At the movies: “The Giver” is great!

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. In theaters Friday (8/15) Synopsis: The Giver (Jeff Bridges) is designated by a future society that confuses conformity with peace to be sole bearer of the violent truth of […]

Faith-based film and TV development company hangs shingle in Mexico

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Producer Pablo José Barroso launches Dos Corazones Films.  A new player in the world of independent film and TV development, finance and production has emerged out of Mexico as […]

“God directed this movie”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture “We say that God directed this movie because we literally waited on him to show us where to go and what to film.” – Wanderlust Productions CEO Braden Heckman […]

Seeing GOD in the life of a DOG + Jeff Bridges a real-life “Giver”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. UP TV airs true story Susie’s Hope tomorrow (8/3) at 8:00 PM (ET). Emmanuelle Vaugier (Two and A Half Men, CSY: NY) stars as Donna Lawrence, a  Greensboro, NC […]

Planning ahead: UP and Hallmark gear up for Christmas

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Christmas is nigh. If by “nigh” we mean nearly six months away.  Which I guess is nigh if you’re in the business of producing holiday movies. There was a […]

Coming Attractions: “The Boy from Baby House 10″, “Old Fashioned” and the latest from the Kendricks

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. The Russian Philomena.  Michael Landon, Jr. and Brian Bird’s Believe Pictures are teaming with Footprint Films of the U.K. to produce a feature film adaptation of the The Boy From […]

“Return to the Hiding Place” to open nationwide on Oct. 24

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. A true tale of young heroes. Return to the Hiding Place, the multi award-winning World War II action drama I raved about in May (when it opened in limited […]

“Heaven is for Real” arrives on Blu-ray/DVD and I’ve got combo packs to give away

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. The recent faith-themed box office hit Heaven is for Real has just hit the home entertainment market.  I’ve got five Blu-ray/DVD combo packs (which includes several bonus features) to […]

Ricky Skaggs: Reflections on life and faith as the “Kentucky Traveler” turns 60

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Ricky Skaggs celebrates 60 years of learning. The legendary bluegrass and country star turned 60 on Friday (7/18).  The Kentucky Traveler (which also happens to be the title of […]

This weekend: “Persecuted” in theaters; “Rocky Road” on TV

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. At the movies: Persecuted The faith-themed political thriller opens nationwide today (7/18). Synopsis: Nationally acclaimed evangelist John Luther is the last obstacle in the way of sweeping religious reform in […]

Walden and Relativity join forces to bring Alice Ozma’s “The Reading Promise” to the screen

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. This Just In: Relativity and Walden Media announced today that they will develop, finance and produce a feature film adaptation of Alice Ozma’s The Reading Promise, a bestselling memoir […]

A “Boonville” celebration!

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. “When you look for the truth, you’ll find grace.” That’s the theme of Boonville Redemption which began production yesterday (7/14) in Thousand Oaks, CA. The star-studded cast includes Pat Boone, […]

TV Review: UP’s “Comeback Dad” + “The Giver” music video + “Moms’ Night Out” coming to DVD/Blu-ray

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Comeback Dad on UP. The original film, debuting tomorrow night (7/12) @ 8:00 PM (ET), stars Charles S. Dutton (Rudy, Roc) and Tatyana Ali (Love That Girl!, The Fresh […]

DVD summer: Here are some inspirational faith-themed entries you may want to check out

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Summer fare. It’s getting hot outside. Here are four films you might want to watch with your family in your air-conditioned living room. SEASON OF A LIFETIME Season of […]

A funny thing happened on the way to Jesus: “Seinfeld” writer Tom Leopold shares his heartfelt and inspiring faith journey + Thank you, Meshach Taylor + “Supernanny” on UP

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture So, there’s this convert…I first met Tom Leopold, the accomplished sitcom writer (Seinfeld, Cheers, Will & Grace), comedian and host of Entertaining Truth on SiriusXM’s Catholic Channel (Ch. 129/Thursdays, […]

First look: Alcon Entertainment picks up feature “Hillsong – Let Hope Rise” to be released worldwide by Warner Bros.

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. You heard it hear first. Alcon Entertainment has acquired Hillsong – Let Hope Rise for worldwide release by Warner Bros. Pictures, it was announced today (7/1)  by Alcon principals […]

Dove Foundation CEO talks about launch of faith/family-friendly version of Netflix + Why Supremes are wrong on Aereo (and what to do about it) + Opportunity for Christian songwriters

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Values have value. I just got off the phone with Dick Rolfe, the visionary founder of The Dove Foundation.  The Dove CEO filled me in on some details about […]

A priest defends capitalists from negative media stereotypes + People are loving “I Like Being 98″

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Greed isn’t good but capitalism is. And, no, contrary to what Hollywood stereotypes like Gordon Gekko might have us believe, capitalism is not synonymous with greed. Greed, of course […]

Eric Mabius is happy to be playing a good guy on Hallmark Channel’s “Signed, Sealed, Delivered”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. My stamp of approval. Signed, Sealed, Delivered delivers its first season finale on Hallmark Channel tomorrow night (6/22) at 8:00 PM ET with Carol Burnett guest starring. The TV […]

Dove Foundation launches subscription entertainment service + INSP remembers Ralph Waite + “Not Alone” at the box office

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. I’ve been busy since returning from the Variety Family and Faith-Friendly Summit in LA having meetings about an entertainment project of my own which I hope to tell you […]

Impressions from PURPOSE, Variety’s 3rd annual gathering of family and faith-friendly entertainment leaders

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Dateline Hollywood. Actually Beverly Hills. Like it was for its two previous sessions (which I also attended), Variety’s 3rd Annual Family Entertainment and faith-based Summit was held at the […]

Roma Downey on “Son of God” success, future projects + “Alone Yet Not Alone” a genuine family project

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Doing good while enjoying what you do. Otherwise known as being blessed while being a blessing. And Roma Downey certainly appears to be achieving that dream. The former star […]

Rita Cosby talks with Pope Francis + “Facts of Life” stars to reunite on Hallmark + UP’s “Comeback” story

posted by John W. Kennedy

A great “get”! WABC Radio host Rita Cosby, who I used to work with Fox News and whose excellent book I reviewed here,  was granted a rare audience with Pope Francis at the Vatican in Rome last Wednesday (6/4), becoming […]

38 great new TV series (with positive themes) that you won’t be watching this fall

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Let there be light! The broadcast and cable networks recently wrapped up their annual upfront presentations in which they locked in and promoted their series selections for the 2014-2015 […]

“Son of God” on DVD and Blu-Ray + “Alice” remembered on INSP

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Son of God hits home entertainment market. The successful big screen spinoff of History Channel’s hit miniseries The Bible has just been released on Blu-ray, DVD  and Digital HD. […]

Why Fox News chief Roger Ailes should run the Fox Broadcasting Network + Faith Links

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Fox News Alert. Amid the slow and painful-to-watch collapse of American Idol and generally dismal ratings, programming chief Kevin Reilly is leaving the Fox Broadcasting after about seven years […]

Previewing this weekend’s faith-themed TV + Ricky Skaggs has his “Moments” + “Return to the Hiding Place” scores in limited release

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Faith TV. Three big faith-themed movies debut on TV this weekend. The Color of Rain (Saturday, 5/31, @ 9:00 PM ET on Hallmark Movie Channel) Synopsis (from The Hallmark […]

Video: Denzel Washington explains it all

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. A shining example of the positive power of words (Pt. 2). Yesterday, I used this space to share some powerful words of wisdom from author/poet Maya Angelou who just […]

Video: Maya Angelou reflects on love, forgiveness and how saying the words “God’s love me” changed her life

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. A shining example of the positive power of words. The renowned author and poet Maya Angelou has died at the age of 86. Here she is talking with Oprah […]

“Return to the Hiding Place” tells amazing true story of teen heroes battling Nazi terror + A talk with the father/daughter team who brought the story to the screen

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Return to the Hiding Place opens this weekend. Just in time for the Memorial Day holiday, Return to the Hiding Place is a suspense-filled action-packed World War II drama […]

Michael and Gina Spehn on seeing their real-life “Brady Bunch” story portrayed in Hallmark Movie Channel’s heartwarming “Color of Rain”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Here’s the story…For those of us who watched The Brady Bunch growing up and wondered whether bringing two families together after one had recently lost its mother and the […]

Human-rights activist Raheel Raza on the radical Islam, the media and the new documentary “Honor Diaries”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Out of the shadows. With the Boko Haram situation in Nigeria in the headlines, the recently released film Honor Diaries seems particularly well timed to encourage discussion about the […]

Lawyer-turned-priest David T. Link and “Seinfeld” writer Tom Leopold honored with Christopher Awards

posted by John W. Kennedy

Honoring the best in us. I attended the 65th annual Christopher Awards ceremony last Thursday recognizing those who use the power of communication to uphold the Catholic organizations motto (and Chinese proverb) that “It’s better to light one candle than […]

65th Annual Christopher Awards honoring positive media to be held tonight + “Moms’ Night Out” connects with its audience

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. “It’s better to light one candle than to curse the darkness.” That’s the motto of The Christophers, a Catholic organization founded in 1945 by a Maryknoll priest named Fr. […]

2 Davids = 1 “Ragamuffin”: How a special friendship led to a biopic about the late Christian songwriter Rich Mullins

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. The story behind Ragamuffin. This gem of a movie (from The Color Green Films), based on the life and legacy of best-selling Christian music singer/songwriter Rich Mullins (Awesome God)who […]

Filmmaker talks “Gosnell” movie which is now an IndieGoGo go and seeking a TV network + Newsday quotes me on NYS guv race

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Goal met! Through the persuasive power of truth, an important story will be told. Despite Hollywood’s obvious fascination with serial killers, the case of Kermit Gosnell, the Philadelphia late-term […]

Movie Review: Faith-friendly comedy “Moms’ Night Out” presses powerful cultural buttons

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Synopsis: Three moms head out for a night on the town while the guys take care of the kids. Hilarity ensues. Cast: Sarah Drew, Sean Astin, Patricia Heaton, Trace […]

Video interviews: The cast of “Moms’ Night Out” (including Sarah Drew & Sean Astin) on making a faith-themed family comedy

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. My talk show. As I previously mentioned, I spent last week hanging out in Hollywood where I attended the red carpet premiere of Moms’ Night Out, the new Erwin […]

Patricia Heaton plays a pastor’s wife in the big screen family comedy “Moms’ Night Out”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Married to another Ray. In the Erwin Brothers’ new family comedy Moms’ Night Out, opening this Friday (5/9), Patricia Heaton brings the comic skills she’s honed on long-running sitcoms […]

Kevin and Sam Sorbo speak out in support of “Gosnell” movie + “Ragamuffin” biopic tells story of late Christian singer/songwriter Rich Mullins

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Hollywood heroes. I spent last week in Hollywood for the big red carpet premiere of the faith-themed family comedy Moms’ Night Out which opens wide this Friday (5/9). I’ll […]

“Touched by an Angel” producer Martha Williamson has “Delivered” a new hit to Hallmark Channel

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. On a wing and a prayer. When I first spoke Martha Williamson, the respected writer/producer who brought Touched by an Angel to life for nine highly-successful seasons on CBS,  […]

Cassi Davis talks about Tyler Perry, reprising Aunt Bam in “Madea’s Neighbors from Hell” and her relationship with God

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Aunt Bam is back! And so is Madea in Madea‘s Neighbors from Hell. The latest comedic and inspirational episode of the tough-as-a-drill sergeant old broad (played with cross-dressing gusto by creator […]

Submission deadline for UP Faith & Family Screenplay Competition is Friday

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Three Finalists Will be Chosen to Compete for $5,000 Grand Pr Three finalists to be chosen to compete for $5000 grand prize. The UP TV cable network and the […]

Easter Sunday TV treats: “Apple Mortgage Cake” on UP ; Martha Williamson’s “Signed, Sealed, Delivered” debuts on Hallmark

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Nice people are staging a comeback on TV. Tonight’s first-run offerings on UP TV and Hallmark Channel proves that programming about nice, decent people can be both entertaining and […]

This Easter weekend, Roma Downey wants you to know that “Son of God” is still in theaters and still changing lives

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Son of God lives. Faith audiences certainly have option at the box office this weekend — with Randall Wallace’s genuinely sweet slice-of-life (and afterlife) Heaven is for Real joining Darren […]

Valerie Harper on her health, her thoughts on faith and her role on Hallmark Channel’s “Signed, Sealed, Delivered”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Taking life one day at a time. Valerie Harper guest stars on the first two episodes of Signed, Sealed, Delivered, the humorous drama series debuting on Hallmark Channel this […]

Comparing “Heaven is for Real” with “God’s Not Dead” + an interview with “Heaven” writer/director Randall Wallace

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Heaven is for Real arrives. the highly-anticipated based on the New York Time #1 bestselling book by Todd Burpo and Lynn Vincent opens in theaters nationwide today (4/16) Synopsis: […]

Fantastic voyage: Colton Burpo talks about seeing his awesome experience portrayed on film in “Heaven is for Real”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. To Heaven and back. Yesterday, I posted my conversation with Todd Burpo, the Nebraska pastor whose book Heaven is for Real chronicling his son Colton’s apparent visit to Heaven […]

“Heaven is for Real” dad tells his story

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. A family’s journey of faith. As pastor of Crossroads Wesleyan Church in Imperial, Nebraska (Population: 1,762), it’s not surprising that Todd Burpo believes in Jesus and Heaven. But even […]

Gretchen Carslon acts in faith-based political thriller + other items from the crossroads

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Ripped from tomorrow’s headlines? Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson is set to make her in the faith-based political thriller Persecuted. She’ll play (guess what?) a TV journalist in the […]

Magic Johnson’s ASPiRE TV network unveils 2014-2015 programming

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. ASPiRE aims high. ASPiRE, a partnership of UP TV and basketball legend-turned-entrepreneur Earvin “Magic” Johnson, has unveiled its programming slate for the second half of 2014 into 2015. The […]

New “Noah” movie part of UP’s ambitious 2014-2015 slate + “Alone Yet Not Alone” to bow in over 200 theaters

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. UP, UP and away in 2014-2015. With sci-fi Noah taking on water at the box office, the UP TV network may just tap into that large swath of the […]

“Jesus Christ Superstar” reimagined and other items from the crossroads

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. What’s the buzz? Jesus Christ Superstar, which debuted on stage over 40 years ago, is being reimagined for the 21st century as an arena rock spectacular.  A  North American […]

For Hattie Kauffman everything is “Falling into Place”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Faith journey. Growing up as a member of the Nez Perce Tribe of Idaho, Hattie Kauffman (one of seven children) became the first Native-American reporter and anchor for a […]

“Left Behind” reboot set for October release

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. The beginning of the end. Stoney Lake Entertainment has announced that its Left Behind reboot will be released on October 3rd. The film stars Nicolas Cage, Chad Michael Murray, […]

Does “Noah” have legs? + 35th anniversary of Biblically -accurate “Jesus Film” celebrated with HD Blu-ray/DVD release

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Rough seas ahead? Noah may be riding an opening weekend box office wave that netted $44 million floats to top of box office but a CinemaScore survey of audience […]

INSP celebrates 40th birthday of “Little House on Prairie” with Sunday marathon

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. A buggy ride down Memory Lane. Tomorrow (Sunday 3/30) INSP will air a special 12-hour marathon to commemorate the 40th Anniversary of NBC’s airing of the two-hour pilot movie […]

“Noah” Review: Biblical epic or sci-fi saga? + The Bible’s version

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Synopsis (from the film’s website): Russell Crowe stars as Noah in the film inspired by the epic story of courage, sacrifice and hope. Directed by visionary filmmaker Darren Aronofsky. […]

You gotta see this happy, life-affirming video!

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. All the Buzz! I caught this on YouTube from musician/songwriter Tom Fletcher of the British pop group McFly. The video cleverly and sweetly chronicles the pregnancy of his wife […]

“God’s Not Dead” is a big hit with Christians but (IMHO) a rewrite could have broadened its reach beyond the choir

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Beyond box office success. Despite opening in fewer than 800 theaters, the Pure Flix production of raked in 9.2 million smackers in its opening weekend — good enough to […]

Tonight’s Best TV Bet: “The Redemption of Henry Myers”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. The Redemption of Henry Myers airs tonight (3/23) @ 9:00 PM ET on The Hallmark Movie Channel. Cast: Drew Water, Erin Bethea, Jaden Roberts, Ezra Proch; Directed by Clayton […]

“God’s Not Dead” preaches to the choir but general audiences will likely be turned off

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. God’s Not Dead opens in theaters across the country today 3/31. Cast: Kevin Sorbo, Shane Harper, David A.R. White, Dean Cain, Willie & Korie Robertson, Benjamin Onyango, Paul Kwo, […]

“God’s Not Dead” and Pure Flix mogul David A.R. White is helping to get the Good News out through his movies

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. The man behind Pure Flix. David A.R. White may be the world’s most-unlikely movie mogul.  Raised in a small farming community just outside of Dodge City, Kansas (home of […]

Kevin Sorbo’s not an atheist but he plays one in the movie “God’s Not Dead”

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Continuing our countdown to Friday’s theatrical premiere of God’s Not Dead (3/21). Yesterday, Shane Harper (Disney’s Good Luck Charlie) talked about his role as the earnest young college student […]

Disney Channel sitcom star Shane Harper tackles big screen and big question – Is God real?

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. From “Luck” to “God”. Its YouTube channel has scored over a million and a half hits. Now, God’s Not Dead, the Pure Flix movie inspired by the book of […]

Bouyed by scripted series and movie success, Hallmark looks ahead to 2014-2015 TV season

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Crowning achievements. Crown Media Family Networks (consisting of Hallmark Channel and the newly-rebranded Hallmark Movies & Mysteries Channel) held its Upfront presentation to advertisers yesterday (3/13) at the Gramercy […]

UP TV to air “The Passion of the Christ” on Palm Sunday

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. A TV event. The Passion of the Christ, Mel Gibson’s blockbuster retelling of Jesus’ final hours, will premiere with limited commercial interruption on the UP television network on Palm […]

How to build an ark + Singing nuns score Lenten hit + Lacey Chabert to star in UP TV Christmas movie

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Ark of triumph? Darren Aronofsky’s Noah movie will finally set sail at the box office on March 28th. While the movie is proving a hard sell for some believers […]

With the success of “The Bible” and “Son of God”, Roma Downey looks ahead

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Touched by faith. On the heels of The Bible and Son of God, married producers Roma Downey and Mark Burnett are hardly resting on their laurels (which also include […]

Jim Breuer: Comedy Warrior + Honey, unplug the kids! How camps are helping kids (and adults) escape the electronic drug epidemic

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. (Jim Breuer from his website) Funny act. One of the perks of doing a blog like this is that occasionally you get invited to stuff.  And, so it was […]

Former Catholic Channel boss Rob Astorino running for NYS governor + “We Ride to DC” looks at media bias against conservatives

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. Good luck, Rob! “I’m announcing my candidacy today for governor of New York State because I’m tired of listening to the fairy tale that everything is just great when […]

“Veil of Tears” uncovers oppression of women in South Asia

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. With tomorrow being International Women’s Day, it’s a good time to note that Veil of Tears, a new documentary from Gospel for Asia (GFA) will be released in the […]

Kathie Lee Gifford hosts “Son of God” Google event featuring Mark Burnett, Roma Downey, Diogo Morgado & others (VIDEO HERE)

posted by John W. Kennedy

Here’s today’s dispatch from the crossroads of faith, media and culture. In case you missed it…Here’s last night’s live Google + Hangouts event  featuring Kathie Lee Gifford hosting an hour-long Q&A with Son of God producers Roma Downey and Mark […]