For more than two decades David Alford experienced fulfillment as an actor on the stage, but about 18 months ago he decided to expand his career and write a film. The Barter Theatre actor found inspiration in the Holy Bible.
By summertime, the writer-director was shooting the film named “Cross Purposes.” Next week, the 39-minute flick will be among 70 films streamed as part of the Inspired Faith Film Festival in Florida. The festival’s judges have nominated the movie for the Best of the Fest award.
The Florida festival isn’t the only national film festival that has given a nod to the film -- at least six others have done so thus far this year. Alford noted that “Cross Purposes” has already won awards and he’s been approached by a distribution company about its possibilities.
The film focuses on two young men. Andrew Morrison is a driven, career-focused young man who has his eyes set on medical school. To bolster his application, Morrison takes a temporary job as a nursing assistant.
His path to success takes an unexpected detour when he encounters a 16-year-old dying of a brain tumor.
The teen is a Christian worrying that he hasn’t accomplished the purpose God set before him. As Morrison works to help the teen, he struggles with anger and his own purpose. A film synopsis says, “They both discover their determination makes them more alike than they ever dreamed…. This story looks at the true meaning of ‘purpose’ in life.”
Proverbs 19:21 served as Alford’s guide as he wrote the film. The Old Testament passage says, “Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.”
Alford believes “if we rest in Him, He’ll show us His purpose…. That’s been so true for me.”
A husband and father, Alford said he’s come to believe that life is not about the big destinations such as graduation and marriage. “Life,” he said, “is found on the journey to those destinations -- journeying with family and friends and those walking with you.”
As one of the characters discovers in “Cross Purposes,” Alford said he’s learned that what a person does in “day-to-day life is much more important.”
Before the COVID-19 pandemic stilled theaters, “Cross Purposes” opened to bigger audiences and greater reactions than Alford ever anticipated. “I was not expecting that,” he said.
When he saw the flick on the big screen and its professional quality, Alford acknowledged, “I cried.”
Interested individuals can now rent or buy “Cross Purposes” on Amazon Prime or Christian Cinema.
The movie led the movie’s team to form a production company, Cross Purposes Productions. According to Alford, proceeds will go to support the company’s new feature-length film, “Found.”
Set to be released in 2021, shooting for “Found” will get under way on July 29 in and around the Abingdon area. Filming is expected to run through Aug. 13 with the movie going into post-production through the end of fall.
“This faith-based film,” Alford said, “is about an Appalachian boy raised in isolation high up in the mountains. [He] finds himself suddenly orphaned and thrust into the hectic life of a very modern family. And struggles to adjust to life in the modern world while teaching the family the personal strength he has through his faith. It is a light-hearted family drama.”
While “Cross Purposes” had a cast of five, “Found” will feature 24 actors, including Barter Theatre favorites Rick McVey, Wendy Piper, Nick Koesters and Sarah Laughland, who are all taking prominent roles in the new film. Alford said the five actors from Cross Purposes are returning for this new story.
Interested individuals can learn more at www.crosspurposesmovie.com or follow the shoot live with streaming and video updates on Instagram @found_themovie or Facebook @ "Found."
Stay up-to-date on what's happening
Receive the latest in local entertainment news in your inbox weekly!