Grandson to Play Billy Graham in Unbroken Film
Billy Graham’s grandson, Will Graham, is set to act as his grandfather in an upcoming film.
The film titled, Unbroken: Path to Redemption, portrays another chapter in the life of Louis Zamperini, an Italian-American who fought in WWII and survived a plane crash in the Pacific ocean and internment in a Japanese prison camp before returning home.
The original film about that time of Louie’s life, Unbroken, was released in 2014. Director Angelina Jolie faced criticism for not being more direct about Zamperini’s journey to Christianity. The new film picks up where the first left off, and goes into more of the details concerning that faith journey.
Upon returning to the U.S., Zamperini faced what society now understands to be post-traumatic stress disorder. The condition drove him to alcoholism and had a negative impact on his marriage. It was Zamperini’s wife who convinced him to attend a crusade led by Billy Graham in Los Angeles in 1949.
Will, a preacher himself, although familiar with his grandfather’s line of work didn’t completely assuage the anxiety he felt over portraying the most famous member of his family.
“I’m a preacher, not an actor. I was only doing in the movie what I do in life, and I was praying that God would give me the ability to do it. I was definitely out of my comfort zone, but that just meant that I had to rely on God more,” he told Deadline.
Will Graham was instructed not to try and imitate his grandfather for the movie, but instead, preach as he normally would.
“I don’t know how he preached the way he did,” Will Graham says. “He never took a breath! His text was all over the place; he was not an expository preacher.”
The new Unbroken film will be produced by the Christian film company Pure Flix. Shooting for the film has been completed, and a fall 2018 release date is expected.