talks 'Breakthrough' miracle: 'Patient dead, mother prayed,
he came back'
By Jeannie Law, ChristianPost.com
a producer of the new Christian film "Breakthrough," says he felt
compelled to make a film based on the proven medical miracle that was
brought about by a mother's prayers to God.
"Breakthrough" tells the miraculous true story of Joyce and
John Smith, a mother and son who relied on the power of prayer and
the Holy Spirit following a fatal accident that led doctors to pronounce
John deceased for 45 minutes until he was revived following his mother's
desperate pleas to God that he be brought back to life.
"I love to make stories, movies that make the case for God," Franklin
told The Christian Post in an interview on the set of "Breakthrough"
last year. "True stories, in different ways, so that someone who might
not know or might be wondering, they see the film and it makes a strong
argument that there is a loving God that cares for us. And when we
believe in Him impossible things can happen. That's one of the things I
look for when I'm evaluating different types of stories and whether or
not I feel like I'm called to do those stories and this film, and this
story had that."
Franklin was also
behind the film "Miracles from Heaven," a blockbuster hit
starring Jennifer Garner that was also based on a real-life
miracle. The film producer said he felt compelled to tell the Smith's
story in "Breakthrough" because there is recorded proof of the
"I've never heard of a story where it's a medical record. It's not like a
subjective thing, It's medical record: 'patient dead, mother prayed,
patient came back to life,' that is medical record," Franklin declared.
"So that is so amazing that I just felt compelled that it would be
another story that could make a strong case for God."
Franklin said he
believes the movie is being released at the perfect time.
"I also think it's one of the reasons why God has allowed this story to
come to the big screen as quickly as it has," he added, "because I do
think that we're in a time where there is chaos, there's anger, there's
animosity, there's frustration, there's so much conflict, that
entertainment, interestingly enough, plays a very powerful role in
either adding to it or helping diffuse it and resolve it."
"I do think that 'Breakthrough' is the type of film that can
produce a breakthrough of unity, and a breakthrough of love and a
breakthrough of faith and a breakthrough of help. Because this is the
fiber of the film," he said.
Franklin maintained that the community of people who rallied around the
Smiths truly exemplified the unity he wishes to see in the world now.
Chrissy Metz ("This is Us") plays the role of Joyce
Smith and actor Josh Lucas ("Sweet Home Alabama") plays
her husband, Brian Smith. Marcel Ruiz ("One Day at a Time")
portrays their son, John. The film was directed by TV director Roxann
Dawson ("House of Cards," "Scandal," "The Americans," and
"Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.").
The 20th Century Fox movie is based on Joyce Smith's book The
Impossible and was adapted for the screen by Grant Nieporte ("Seven
"Breakthrough" will be released in theaters nationwide on April
New Book 'The Truth About Men' Was Inspired By
By Joi-Marie McKenzie - Essence.com
author andn filmmaker DeVon Franklin is back with another book to
improve relationships, and this time he's leaving his beautiful wife,
actress Meagan Good, out of it.
Although the two joined forces to pen their New York Times bestselling book,
The Wait, which encouraged couples to use abstinence as a tool to
improve relationships, Franklin this time was inspired by another family
member to write a book just for men; and women too.
"The Truth About Men: What Men and Women Need To Know", hit
bookshelves February 5, 2019, and is already at #14 on the EPCA Christian
Booksellers Top 50 list. It was inspired by Franklin's late father, Donald.
"He passed away when I was 9 years old," Franklin told ESSENCE exclusively.
"Years after he passed away, I found out he was unfaithful with my mother.
It really began to make me think: 'My goodness, well if my Dad was this way,
what does this mean for me?'"
"'What does this say about me? Am I going to be predisposed?" he
Franklin said it was important to him that he didn't repeat his father's
mistakes and "hurt the women in my life."
"I don't want to be the type of man that says one thing and does
another," Franklin explained. "It really made me more aware of navigating
the 'dog' in me.'
In fact, "mastering the dog," is a chapter in Franklin's The Truth About
Men. It's the film producer's metaphor for mastering men's ability - or
lack thereof - to control lust that's detrimental to building healthy
This is why The Truth About Men, Franklin said, isn't just for
men. It's also for women to provide insight on how men really think, and the
motives behind some of their most troubling, or problematic, ways.
So what's a 'dog' moment?
Franklin gave an example: If a man is keeping you in "the grey area" when
it comes to dating, he hasn't mastered the dog within him. He advises women
in relationships with those types of men to dump them. Just kidding; he
advises women to "ask direct questions and wait for direct answers. "
"The dog likes to hide in the shadows, but you have to bring the dog into
the light," he added.
Along with holding a mirror up to black men, Franklin hopes that The
Truth About Men will also create a featherbed of support and a "safe
space" to allow black men the breadth and freedom to emote - whether or not
it subscribes to the very limiting expectations of masculinity.
"As men, we need a safe space to be able to talk because when we express
what we feel - and we're met with judgment or we're met with, 'How could
you?' - that shuts us down," Franklin said. "And it's so important for...the
women in our lives to be a safe space."