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Kendricks on 'Overcomer': One saved
'better than 10' Oscars

By Michael Foust - bpnews.net

  Albany, Georgia based Alex and Stephen Kendrick have enjoyed box-office success that few filmmakers ever will experience.

  Their movies "Fireproof" (2008) and "Courageous"(2011) both opened in the Top 4. Their 2015 movie "War Room" climbed to No. 1 in America on its second weekend. They've been interviewed by big-city newspapers and broadcast networks.

  But they don't judge the success of their movies solely on box-office numbers or public relations victories. They judge success, Stephen Kendrick said, by a movie's spiritual impact.

  "One person coming to Christ is better than 10 Academy Awards," he told Baptist Press.

  The Kendricks are applying the same standard to their upcoming movie "Overcomer" (PG), which will release in theaters Aug. 23 and asks moviegoers to consider the question: What do you allow to define you? Yes, they want "Overcomer" to do well at the box office. But that's because it will increase the number of moviegoers impacted.

  "People often say, 'You guys have an agenda when you're making this movie.' Yes, absolutely --- the Great Commission is our agenda," Stephen Kendrick added. "We're unapologetic about it. I'm not going to stand before God and Him say, 'Did you get an Academy Award?'"

  "Overcomer" tells the story of a workaholic boys' basketball coach, John Harrison, whose team is depleted when a large company closes and families move out of town. John grows depressed, knowing a state championship is no longer within reach and his identity as a successful coach is gone. Things get worse when he is told to coach the cross-country team, which has only one runner, Hannah, a quiet girl who is searching for her identity in life, too.

  LifeWay is publishing multiple resources for adults and children to accompany the movie, led by a Bible study kit. Resources also include books geared toward adults ("Defined," written by the Kendricks), teen boys and young men "Revealed," by the Kendricks and Troy Schmidt), teen girls and young women ("Radiant," by Priscilla Shirer) and middle schoolers ("Wonderful," by the Kendricks and Amy Parker). All resources explore the movie's theme: finding your identity in Christ.

  A soundtrack album has been released with cuts from Casting Crowns, Zach Williams, Koryn Hawthorne, Hillsong Worship, Tauren Wells, Mandisa and Tenth Avenue North.

  Christians, the Kendricks said, too often follow the world's lead in finding their identity. Many men and women find identity in their job. For others, it's found in -- for example -- family, friends, finances, sports and beauty.

  "It is our tendency to find our identity in what our positions are, what our accomplishments are, what other people are saying about us," Stephen Kendrick said. "People become workaholics to try to prove themselves, because they're trying to find their identity in something besides Christ."  Placing one's identity in worldly things is not only unbiblical, the Kendricks said, but it also will lead to disaster in life.

  "My foundation and identity must be on the unchanging character of Jesus Christ," Alex said. "If your job changes and your identity is in Christ, then you're OK. You still know who you are instead of a guy losing his job and his life just collapsing."

  Stephen called it a "core issue" that's "shouting to us from the Word of God." Alex agreed.

  "In a day and age when the culture is debating identity, we must ask: Who gets to define who we are? Is it your feelings? Is it your circumstances or what culture is saying? The Creator gets to define his creation," Alex said. "... He has the authority to define us and He knows this better than we know ourselves."

  The movie is personal for Alex Kendrick, who said he became convicted on the issue while writing and filming it. Previously, he said, he would have identified himself as a filmmaker, minister, writer, speaker, husband and father.

  "The Lord basically prompted my heart with this question: If your next movie bombs, do you know who you are? Or if you never make a movie again, do you know who you are? And so I had to wrestle with that," he said. "I had to do some reorganizing in my own heart and mind of my identity. So if this movie bombs, I still know who I am. If you had asked me after 'War Room,' I think it would've been a little more devastating to me if it didn't work. But today, I think I would be disappointed, but not devastated."

  It will be the sixth film for the Kendricks, whose first movie, "Flywheel" (2003), was made on a shoestring budget using video equipment that has been surpassed by what is found in most iPhones.

  It's safe to say they've come a long way since that film 16 years ago. "Overcomer" has the biggest budget of any of their films. (The figure hasn't been disclosed.) It has the best cameras and the best lights they've used, too.

  "We do believe that this is our best film when it comes to the production values," Stephen said.

  The brothers' filmmaking ministry is unique, yes, but it's "the arena God's put us in," Alex said. It's also allowed them to reach millions of people with the Gospel without leaving their state of Georgia.

  "I did the math," Stephen said, "and if I were to preach at a different church of a thousand people every Sunday for a hundred years, I would have reached about 5 million people with the Gospel message. And 'Fireproof' was seen by 5 million people in a matter of weeks."

  They hope "Overcomer" has an even bigger impact on the world.

  "We're excited to see what God does with this one," Alex said. "It's been a pretty long year and  half for us. We hope that God does something with it that blows our minds."

  Alex Kendrick grew up in Smyrna, GA and graduated from Kennesaw State University with a bachelor's degree in communications.

~ from bpnews.net ~


"War Room,
Exclusive Collector's Edition DVD"

Stephen Kendrick,
Alex Kendrick

"The Battle Plan For Prayer: From Basic Training to Targeted Strategies"

Eric Wilson,
Alex Kendrick


Chris Fabry,
Stephen Kendrick,
Alex Kendrick

"War Room: Prayer Is A Powerful Weapon "

Chris Fabry,
Stephen Kendrick,
Alex Kendrick

"War Room
Study Guide"

Stephen Kendrick,
Alex Kendrick
Randy Alcorn

"The Resolution
for Men"

Priscilla Shirer

Stephen Kendrick,
Alex Kendrick

"The Love Dare"
(New Revised Edition)

Stephen Kendrick,
Alex Kendrick

"Love Dare
Day By Day"


Priscilla Shirer
His Light, Your Life

Radiant by Priscilla Shirer is an invitation for teen girls and young women to enjoy a candid conversation on identity. Readers will hear reflections on life lessons that Shirer has gathered from her teen years until now. She'll show you how the light of God's Word shaped her identity and she'll teach you how it can change and shape your life as well. The culture will try to define you, but this world is starving for something different that comes only from the creative genius of your God.
Recommended for ages
13 years and older.
Stephen Kendrick,
Alex Kendrick

The Truth About
Who I Am

Wonderful: The Truth About Who I Am by Stephen Kendrick, Alex Kendrick, with Amy Parker is written for kids ages 8 to 12 years as they are discovering their true selves. This book focuses middle-grade readers to focus their identity right back to where it belongs: on their hearts and souls and minds, reflecting the glory of the One who made them. Featuring full-color illustrations, each short essay and activity will help kids discover their worth in God and learn that their true identity is nothing short of wonderful.
Softcover edition.
Chris Fabry

John Harrison, Basketball coach, life changes overnight when his high school team is crushed by the sudden closing of the town's largest employer, a manufacturing plant. Hundreds of families start moving away, leaving him running a struggling cross-country program. He meets Hannah Scott and begins helping this unlikely runner attempt the impossible in the year's biggest race.
Various Artists
"Overcomer Soundtrack: Music From and
Inspired by the Original Motion Picture"

Based on the book and film that ask, "What do you allow to define you?" comes the music that will touch your heart. Includes "Fear Is A Liar" (Zach Williams) "Overcomer" (Mandisa), "Even When You're Running" (Casting Crowns)"Known" (Tauren Wells) "Who You Say I Am" (Hillsong Worship),  "Enough" (Koryn Hawthorne) and "Control" (Tenth Avenue North), "My Revival" (Donald Lawrence) all of which are featured in the movie; as well as "Even When You're Running" (Casting Crowns), and more.
Stephen Kendrick,
Alex Kendrick

"Overcomer DVD
Bible Study Kit"

Many people feel they are less than who God says they are. We get our identity from our careers, our political positions, family roles in the family, and other things. This small group study uses clips from the film Overcomer to examine how we determine our identity and how we can find our true identity in Christ. The Bible study is geared for adult groups to use prior to the movie or just after seeing the movie. The study includes clips from the movie.
The Overcomer Bible Study Kit has five sessions and includes:
one Bible Study Book
one DVD with a promotional video and five 2-4 minute
video sessions
Stephen Kendrick,
Alex Kendrick

Who God Says You Are

Inspired by the Kendrick brothers' new movie Overcomer, and written by the #1 New York Times best-selling author team behind The Love Dare and The Battle Plan for Prayer, comes an exciting new resource about discovering your God-given identity and embracing the wonder of who you were created to be. At this very moment, what you believe about your own purpose and value affects almost every area of your life - including how you think and feel, the way you react to circumstances, and how you approach God and your relationships. But what is guiding your core beliefs? Are they healthy and founded upon solid truth? Or are they constantly shifting with the opinions of others or your own emotions? Based upon powerful insights from the scriptural book of Ephesians, and seasoned with personal stories and practical wisdom, Defined challenges you to let the One who knows you best be the One who guides your heart the most. It's time for all of us to live in the amazing light of His acceptance,
abundance, and strength.
Stephen Kendrick,
Alex Kendrick,
Troy Schmidt

Discovering Your
True Identity in Christ

Revealed by Stephen Kendrick and Alex Kendrick is a book for teen guys and young men to help lead them through an investigation of discovering who they really are. Readers will learn that your identity is much more than your grades, your looks, or your athletic skills. The only One who truly knows you and defines you is the One who created you. Revealed will give you answers about who you are and where you're going, leading you to uncover your true Christ-shaped identity. Recommended for ages 13 years and older.