Written by: Gillian Fraser
Article source: JOY! Magazine
From the makers of I Can Only Imagine comes the true life story of Christian music mega star Jeremy Camp and his remarkable journey of love and loss that proves there is always hope in midst of tragedy, and that faith tested is the only faith worth sharing. I had the opportunity to watch I Still Believe and interview KJ Apa, the lead actor playing Jeremy. I was blown away by this movie. It is really an amazing film that has the potential to touch many lives. It brought me to tears.
This true life story will leave viewers strengthened in their faith.
Q. Now KJ, this is something very different to the usual shows that you act in. What made you want to do this movie?
As soon as I read the script for the first time, I was immediately inspired by Jeremy’s story. I knew it was a story that needed to be told to the world. I was scared as it was so sensitive, but it needed to be told. There was a lot of pressure because this was a true life story.
Q. Has this film impacted your life in any way?
Yeh definitely, the story and experience itself, as well as how it was filmed. I was so immersed in the character that I was playing – It was an emotional time of my life. Jeremy’s testimony is full of real pain. The story itself has also taught me a lot and strengthened my faith. Every viewer has some something to learn from each one of the characters in this story.
Q. You play Jeremy Camp in this movie, how did you get into character?
I really focused on the script, and I spent a lot of time getting to know Jeremy. It is a real life story, we are literally telling someone else’s life story. There is no room for interpretation. There was a lot of pressure as we wanted to honour Jeremy and Melissa. The movie reflects their story realistically. I worked very closely with the directors, we all worked really closely together. Jeremy was on set every single day. He was always there if I needed to talk to him.
I Still Believe will be in South African cinemas from the 20th March.
Q. What would you say to someone who is giving up hope in a tough situation?
I would tell them to take a deep breath. One of the interesting things that I learnt from this movie is that it’s okay to be angry with God. It is okay to question God. God can handle it. Really the question is, are you going to blame God, or is this situation going to deepen your faith? Look at Melissa’s character in the film. She went through the toughest situation, yet she remained hopeful and faith-filled.
Q. How did your own faith play a role?
My faith definitely looks very similar to that of Jeremy’s. This is why I was inspired to play the role. My faith is personal to me, it changes as I grow. It is deeply intimate. Shooting this movie has definitely been a learning and growing experience for me. It has exposed me to many powerful testimonies and people.
Q. How do you remain grounded in your faith in Hollywood?
That’s a really good question. It is definitely not easy! I would say that one of the most important things is the people whom you choose to surround yourself with. Your friends, your family, your connections. They can either lift you up or pull you down. You need to keep your feet firmly rooted – you need to stay grounded in what you believe, no matter what comes your way.
Q. Do you have any plans to travel to South Africa?
It is definitely on my bucket list! I would love to come to South Africa one day soon. Congratulations on all that you are doing in South Africa! God bless and all your readers.
Date published: 18/03/2020
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