I had the honor of speaking with the writers and producers of the hit pro-life movie “Unplanned.” Not only am I passionate about the lives of the unborn, but I write about the issue of abortion (and spiritual warfare) in my series Beauties from Ashes.
So, when I had the opportunity to get some behind the scenes information about the film, I knew you all would enjoy reading it here even though I published it on SoCal Voice.
The pro-life movie “Unplanned” is a box office hit peaking at more than 1,500 theaters nationwide. Approaching $20 million on a meager $6 million budget, the Pure Flix film deals with the transformational story of former Planned Parenthood Director Abby Johnson.
The writers and producers Chuck Konzelman and Cary Solomon credit the power of prayer to the film’s blockbuster success and the countless remarkable stories that have followed.
“We want to thank the prayer warriors. Had we not had so much prayer, we would not have been able to open this film,” Konzelman said. “The Lord made straight a path of many obstacles.”
The producers recognized immense spiritual warfare since the film’s conception. “This has been a battle from the first moment. We know the first thing the devil did after Jesus was born was the slaughter of the innocent. To hurt God the most, the devil wants to kill the children,” Solomon said.
Two major obstacles the movie overcame was an R-rating by the Motion Picture Association of America and having its ads banned on major television channels.
“The R rating prevented us from using the most effective form of advertising that there is which is running our movie trailer before other movies,” Konzelman said.
In addition, despite their willingness to pay for advertising, the film was blocked on cable television for the exception of Fox News and CBN. Google, Facebook, and Instagram also denied ads for the movie. Google even labeled the film as propaganda.
There were reports from viewers of various theaters across the country of disturbances and disruptions during the showing of the film such as the screen going black during the 90-second abortion scene. Large groups of more than 100 would arrive at theaters and were told the movie had been canceled or sold out. A few reported going inside to see the movie was showing in an empty theater. Other moviegoers reported buying multiple tickets for groups in advance only to arrive at the theater and be directed to the wrong movie showing.
“This was so the film would not be successful. People were purchasing tickets for ‘Unplanned’ in large numbers, but the box office was crediting other movies. When the purchaser reported being sent to the wrong theater, the box office told them not to worry and just go on in the theater to see ‘Unplanned.’” Solomon said. “What we are talking about is demonic interference.”
Although the producers say the movie has been requested by Canadian citizens, the film has been denied showing in Canada.
“Canada has the most unrestricted laws on abortion, worse than China and North Korea. Anyone can do an abortion, anytime anywhere. It’s so bad they don’t even keep records on it anymore. But the people are crying out for us to bring them the movie,” Solomon said. “The suppression of free speech across Canada and the West is unbelievable. You’ve never seen anything like it.”
Despite the enormous hurdles the producers recognize as spiritual warfare, the success of the film has continued to grow proving the power of God and the prayers of His people.
Konzelman and Solomon say that every nation on the face of the earth has reached out, asking them to arrange a movie showing. The reports of pro-choicers turned pro-life is more than they can count, including some who say they went to the movie to challenge it but left with changed hearts.
And Then There Were None, an organization started by Abby Johnson to help abortion clinic workers out of the industry, reports one to two calls a day from those seeking help since the release of “Unplanned.”
The producers expressed how they have been touched by the numerous accounts of God’s love and amazing stories such as a nine-year-old boy from New York who started his own website asking for others to pray for Governor Cuomo to be saved and change his position on abortion.
Konzelman and Solomon shared another extraordinary story of a ninety-year-old blind priest and friend of Abby Johnson who went to the theater to “listen” to the film. Upon leaving the theater, he reported, “I saw the whole movie! God gave me sight for two hours to see it.” The priest remains blind for the exception of viewing the movie.
When asked how people can help further the Unplanned mission, the producers said to continue prayers to secure international cooperation to bring the movie around the world beginning with Canada, Brazil, and Australia.
The “Unplanned” DVD is expected to release in the U.S. at the end of summer.
“By people praying and simply talking about the movie, it is exploding all over the world,” Solomon said. We see tremendous signs of change. I can honestly say, the tide of abortion is turning. I will tell you, we are going to win this battle. Jesus is going to win this battle. He’s going to put an end to abortion not only in America but around the world.”