Reality TV star Duane Chapman, who's better known as Dog the Bounty Hunter, will star in the upcoming Christian film “Hunter’s Creed.”
Previously titled “Hunting God,” the new faith-based movie was partly inspired by the commonly asked question: Why does God allow bad things to happen?
The inspirational story, directed by Justin Jackola and written by Ken Miyamoto, is about keeping the faith even in the face of great personal loss.
“After losing his wife, a man reunites with his church buddies to film the hunting show they’ve always wanted to make together. Before long, he senses a dark presence in the woods eventually bringing him face to face with death — and his faith,” the synopsis of “Hunter’s Creed” reads.
Chapman plays himself in the film, which also stars Wesley Truman Daniel (“Second Samuel”), Mickey O’Sullivan, Ann Sonneville, John Victor Allen, James Errico and LaDios Muhammad.
The Christian Post interviewed Jackola, who shared about some of the miraculous occurrences that took place while filming “Hunter’s Creed,” as well as details involving the famous bounty hunter’s involvement in the film.
Christian Post: What was the inspiration behind the film?
Jackola: The film was inspired by the following three questions:
1. Why does God allow bad things to happen?
2. Are there wrong ways to present Truth?
3. Does one’s spiritual beliefs change when they are about to die?
The main character, Dave, is based on my personal journey asking who God really is? I wanted to make a film based on someone who has known God, rejects Him, and then comes face to face with death, and what they do in that moment.
CP: Can you share about wanting to include Duane "Dog" Chapman in his first faith-based film?
Jackola: When my producer reps brought Dog’s name to me for the role, I knew he was exactly the right person. Dog Chapman was the perfect choice for "Hunter’s Creed" for a number of reasons. First off, Dog isn’t afraid of his faith. He’s open and honest about what God’s done in his life on and off-camera. In his television show, we have literally seen him pray on camera for help in finding his next bounty.
It’s a film about a man’s intimate response to losing his wife to cancer and Dog has experienced exactly that with his late wife Beth Chapman passing away to cancer.
CP: How was this experience for Duane, given how similar the plot was to his own loss?
Jackola: It was a beautiful experience to shed tears on set with Dog while making the film. There is a scene where Dog is giving the main character, Dave, advice on taking care of his wife (Kate), who just found out she had cancer. Dog began to weep during the take and began giving real life advice, off-script and from his heart, on what to do for his wife — advice that he had learned when dealing with Beth's battle with cancer.
When we first talked to Dog about the project, he said that his wife, Beth, was one of the main reasons he wanted to do this film. The story struck a cord in his heart. The timing was also divine. Dog told us that he had been sitting at home thinking “I want to do a feature film” and our team reached out to him for the role the next day! Dog is a reality TV star, so that wasn’t normal at all!
CP: What are you hoping people take from this film?
Jackola: Without giving away the ending of the film, we want people to walk away with a sense of awe, that God’s sovereignty and plan may be more beautiful and complex than you could ever imagine. We also want people to think deeply about what they truly believe. If you were face to face with death, where would your heart really rest?
CP: What are some other details you can share about the film?
Jackola: The movie was shot in Savanna, Illinois, in a 120-year-old cabin. Dog’s scenes were shot in Colorado.
There were several “miraculous coincidences” that happened in this film:
The eagles in the film — while filming hundreds of brown and bald eagles showed up and made it in the film.
A giant snowstorm hit on the only two days we had off during filming and melted before we had to start filming again two days later.
Everyone involved in the filmmaking was amazing! It’s not often you get a perfect cast and crew and that in itself is a miracle! There was just such JOY on set.
The “Hunter’s Creed” will be released Oct. 6.