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THE ART OF STORY, THE CRAFT OF SCREENWRITING AND MORE

Beverly Lewis’ The Shunning premiering April 16

To my regular readers… please forgive me. I have been AWOL from this blog for far too long. I do have three really good reasons… I’ve been writing for a living, cooking up three new projects I’m very excited about and… oh yes… finishing this movie called The Shunning which premieres Saturday, April 16, 8 Central/9 Pacific, on the Hallmark Channel.

So I’m back to blogging to first do some shameless self-promotion. I hope you’ll have a chance to tune in. Michael Landon, Jr., and I have returned to Beverly Lewis’ world of the Amish one more time. We first journeyed there for Saving Sarah Cain a few years ago. That movie continues to have a loyal audience on Lifetime. This time, we’ve adapted Beverly Lewis’ first book in her long, New York Times best-selling career.

The Shunning tells the story of Katie Lapp, a young Amish woman who discovers on he eve of her wedding that she was adopted from outside the Amish faith, and that her “Englisher” biological mother is searching for her. The discovery so “ferhoodles” her that she walks out on her wedding and goes through an identity crisis before finally coming to peace with her situation. It’s the first of three books in The Heritage of Lancaster County series. The film stars Danielle Panabaker as Katie Lapp and Sherry Stringfield as her biological mother, Laura Mayfield. We’re hoping for some solid ratings so that Hallmark will want us to adapt the next two sequel novels into films. (If you’re interested in reading the novel, a special “movie edition” is being released on April 16 — the same day as the premiere.

Anyway, please enjoy this short behind-the-scenes documentary about the film, and let me know what you think of The Shunning if you have a chance to watch it.  If you don’t, not to worry, I’ll be hitting you up to get the Sony DVD when it releases in September. Like I said… Shameless.

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About Brian Bird

15 Replies

  1. Joyce Gamble

    I’m excited to see “The Shunning” come to life on April 16th. I’ve read almost every book you have written, and I’m wondering if you have considered doing the series on Abram’s Daughters. That was the first series I read, and I recommended it to my daughter, daughter-in-law, and all my friends because I wanted them to enjoy it as much as I did. The characters were so real and I felt drawn into a story that had such hope in the midst of heartache. Thank you for writing such a beautiful series of books and presenting the gospel to your readers through the lives of your characters.

  2. Kimberly Shaddox

    I absolutely loved the movie. I thought it remained very true to the story of the book, which is always a concern. I so appreciate you and Michael Landon, Jr. making quality family movies. I wondered if this movie was going to cover all three books or just the first. Since it covered just the first one, the first thing I did when it ended was to search the internet to see if the other two books are going to be made into movies. I certainly hope so!

  3. Thanks for your kind words about “The Shunning.” Adapting beloved books for the screen is always a challenge because loyal readers are so devoted to every “jot and tittle.” We also only have 90 minutes to cover 350-plus pages of story-telling. But we’re glad we were able to capture the central through-line and of spirit of Beverly’s novel. Also be watching our Facebook fan page and this blog for an announcement (we hope very soon) about next book in the series, “The Confession.”

  4. Thanks for your comments, Joyce. I hope you were happy with our adaptation of “The Shunning.” We have read Abram’s Daughters. You’re right… it would make a terrific series of films. The challenge is there are very few networks besides Hallmark that will air movies like this anymore, so we need to get through The Heritage of Lancaster County series first!

  5. Justina

    I enjoyed this movie very much! I can’t wait for the following series. I personally struggle with reading so watching these movies helps me put the books into perspective. My Mom and I enjoy Hallmark channel very much for these wonderful family movies. And I am 24 years old but would rather watch movies like this than any romantic comedies, horror or action movies. Many of times it helps me to be thankful for the life I have been given but also carry many goals and dreams for my life. I always wanted to live life as an Amish woman because their families and communities are very loving, hard working and they work together. But I can relate to Katty, in that music is my passion and my life. A dream of mine as well is to practice veterinary medicine one day cause I love animals and live life helping people and animals. The only book I’ve ever read through cover to cover and fully understood all of it was Blessings by Kim Vogel Sawyer. I hope that you or some producer would also consider making a movie based on that book as well cause I will be the first one in line for the first copy of it on dvd. These movies are a great idea and I pray that you will continue to bring these great novels of real life experiences of families and communities to life. Thanks so much.

  6. Laura Allen

    I have yet to see The Shunning, though I just finished reading the book for the 2nd time and look forward to seeing the movie. We loved Saving Sarah Cain, and we truly appreciate the work you do to bring God-honoring, faith-building, and family-friendly stories to the screen. Have you read Janette Oke’s A Gown of Spanish Lace? It is a stand-alone story, and would make a wonderful movie! I read it to my preteen/teen girls years ago, and they loved it and raved about what an incredible movie it would make– action, romance, a little mystery, and some twists and turns are all included in this story, which is set in the old west. If you haven’t read it, please do! I think you’ll be convinced!

  7. Rachel

    I know this is kinda late, but I just watched The Shunning and loved it! But I really, really want to see a sequel! Will there be one?

  8. Thanks, Rachel. We are now in post-production on “The Confession,” our sequel to “The Shunning.” It premieres on the Hallmark Channel on January 19, 2013 at 8 p.m. I hope you’ll tune in and let us know what you think.

  9. Thanks for your nice comments about Saving Sarah Cain, Laura. I hope you will watch “The Shunning.” It is now available on DVD and at Netflix and iTunes, and amazon.com. Our sequel “The Confession” is now in post=production and will air on The Hallmark Channel on January 19, 2013 at 8 p.m. As for “Gown of Spanish Lace,” stay tuned for more news — a screenplay is in the works :)

  10. Thanks for your nice words, Justine. We are now in post-production on “The Confession,” our sequel to “The Shunning.” It premieres on the Hallmark Channel on January 19, 2013 at 8 p.m. I hope you’ll tune in and let us know what you think.

  11. Laura

    @Brian
    Thank you for your reply, Brian! I’m so excited that you’re working on “A Gown of Spanish Lace”! That is awesome! I’ll be watching for it to come out! We did see “The Shunning,” and enjoyed it very much. The ending left us wanting a sequel, though! We’ll be glad to check out “The Confession” next winter when it comes out. Thanks again for the great movies; it is SO difficult to find God-honoring films these days.

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