ATLANTA, Feb. 22, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- GMC TV, America's favorite channel for uplifting family entertainment, presents the original World Television Premiere Movie The Carpenter's Miracle, starring Cameron Mathison ("All My Children"), Michelle Harrison, Sarah-Jane Redmond ("Smallville"), Adrian Holmes ("Smallville," "True Justice") and Ryan Grantham (Diary of a Wimpy Kid, The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus). The thought-provoking and heartwarming film makes its world television premiere on Saturday, March 30 and Sunday, March 31 at 7, 9 and 11 p.m. ET, exclusively on GMC TV.
Based on Judd Parkin's screen adaptation of his own novel and directed by K. T. Donaldson, The Carpenter's Miracle tells the tale of a humble small-town handyman, Josh Carey (Mathison), who finds himself at the center of media attention after attempting to resuscitate 12-year-old Luke Quinn (Grantham), the victim of a drowning accident. When the boy shows no signs of life for an hour, Josh consoles Luke's mother, Sarah (Harrison), in the emergency room. But when he lightly touches the boy with his hand while offering a heavenward wish, the boy is suddenly revived.
Many in the town consider it a miraculous act. But Josh is not religious and doesn't believe he had anything to do with Luke's recovery, even after he seems to heal several others in the following days. When local coverage of the story catches the eye of national tabloid news producer Jack Reardon (Holmes), he dispatches his most aggressive reporter, Delia Tynan (Redmond) to try to land an exclusive interview with Josh, Sarah and Luke. Although they politely decline her cash offers, Delia is relentless—to the point of potentially disrupting a blossoming relationship between Josh and Sarah. But when Josh learns his elderly mother needs expensive emergency surgery, he must make a decision that could change his life and the lives of those he cares about most.
An Entertainment One (eOne) production, The Carpenter's Miracle also stars Stephen E. Miller ("Da Vinci's Inquest"), Candus Churchill, Aaron Pearl ("Intelligence"), Alex Sparling and Donna White. The film is produced by Randolph Cheveldave (Goodnight for Justice, "First Wave").
After reading Judd Parkin's Christmas-themed novel The Carpenter's Miracle, GMC Vice Chairman Brad Siegel and Senior Vice President of Originals Barbara Fisher both knew it had the potential to make a great original movie for the network. But given its central themes of faith, skepticism and miracles, they asked the TV-exec-turned-author if he would consider adapting it into an Easter movie.
"It's hard to find entertaining, contemporary films that evoke the spirit of Easter," says Fisher. "We talked to Judd and he agreed it could work as well, if not better, as an Easter story."
Once Parkin delivered the script, Fisher tapped K. T. Donaldson, a filmmaker she had worked with successfully on several past projects, to direct the film. Donaldson was drawn to the screenplay's exploration of Josh's doubt in the face of events that those around him see as miracles. "I enjoyed the idea of tracking a character who is clearly impacting people, but who questions the reality of his power, questions the possibility that a higher being would use him as a medium, and even questions the idea that a higher power would get involved in the daily lives of people."
The next step was casting the central role of Josh—a tall order, says Fisher. "We needed an actor who had the ability to portray Josh's kindness and emotional openness, as well as the masculinity and sex appeal to be a romantic lead," she says.
The network executive found all that and more in Cameron Mathison, the former daytime TV heartthrob perhaps best known for his appearances on "Dancing with the Stars" and as a special contributor on "Good Morning America."
"Cameron has this great ability to be empathetic and vulnerable," says Fisher. "Those qualities were critical in this movie and in his role."
Tabori agrees that Mathison, whom he had never worked with previously, was uniquely suited for the role of Josh. "He's a kind of quiet, introspective hero, a Joel McCrea-Gary Cooper type that we don't see much anymore. We were extremely fortunate to cast him."
For the main female roles of single mother Sarah Quinn and ambitious TV reporter Delia Tynan, Donaldson turned to Michelle Harrison and Sarah-Jane Redmond, two talented Canadian actresses whom he had directed before. "We got lucky that they were both available," says the director.
In casting the part of Sarah's son Luke, the filmmakers decided on 14-year-old Ryan Grantham. "It's always challenging to find a kid who is authentic," says Fisher. "We were looking for an all-American kid who is a bit of a smart aleck but also has a bit of sweetness in him. The whole idea is that none of the characters are really exceptional. That's what makes the story so interesting—that regular people are caught up in the whirlwind of something extraordinary."
Although Fisher notes that GMC's programming is not specifically holiday-based, she says "there are certain holidays that resonate for our audience and Easter is definitely one of them. We wanted to create an event around that and thought it made sense to do something original, which we've never done before. It fits in beautifully for a network that focuses on uplifting programming. But it also fits in because it is an entertaining story. We're not into preaching to people or moralizing. That's what's so great about this story: it works for Easter but it would work as an entertaining movie any time of the year."
GMC Network presents an eOne production, The Carpenter's Miracle starring Cameron Mathison, Michelle Harrison, Ryan Grantham, Sarah-Jane Redmond, Adrian Holmes and Stephen E. Miller. Music by Brent Belke. Casting by Shana Landsburg (US) and Candice Elzinga (Canada). Director of Photography is David Pelletier ("Continuum," "Dark Universe") Produced by Cheveldave, along with eOne executive producers John Morayniss ("Rogue," "Rookie Blue") and Ira Pincus (When Love is Not Enough: The Lois Wilson Story, Goodnight for Justice). Screenplay by Judd Parkin who also serves as executive producer. The film is directed by K. T. Donaldson. Entertainment One will handle the international distribution for the film.
About GMC TV
GMC TV (www.watchGMCtv.com) is America's favorite network for uplifting music and family entertainment. The network presents original and acquired movies, series, stage plays and music specials along with gMovies, the first faith-friendly streaming movie service. The GMC TV brand is reflected in "Uplift Someone," the network's successful pro-social initiative. GMC TV can be seen in more than 58 million homes on various cable systems around the country, as well as DISH Network on channel 188, DIRECTV on channel 338 and Verizon FiOS on channel 224. Follow GMC TV on Facebook and Twitter at http://facebook.com/gmctv and http://twitter.com/gmctv.
About Entertainment One
Entertainment One Ltd. (LSE: ETO) is a leading international entertainment company that specializes in the acquisition, production and distribution of film and television content. The company's comprehensive network extends around the globe including Canada, the US, the UK, Ireland, Spain, Australia, New Zealand, Benelux, France, Germany, Scandinavia, South Africa and South Korea. Through established Entertainment and Distribution divisions, the company provides extensive expertise in film distribution, television and music production, family programming and merchandising and licensing. Its current rights library is exploited across all media formats and includes more than 35,000 film and television titles, 2,700 hours of television programming and 45,000 music tracks. http://www.entertainmentonegroup.com/
SOURCE GMC TV