(by Jill Stanek, LifeSiteNews) After three weeks of limited release in 339 theaters nationwide, October Baby has surprised just about everyone as a sleeper success and this weekend will open in over 220 new venues. To date October Baby has earned $3.8 million, not bad for a movie that cost less than $1 million to make and had a “paltry” $3 million marketing budget.
With those kinds of profits on the horizon, October Baby has now attracted the attention of NARAL, since filmmakers Jon and Andy Erwin have committed to donating 10% of the movie’s royalties to the Every Life is Beautiful Fund, “which will distribute funds to frontline organizations helping women facing crisis pregnancies, life-affirming adoption agencies,” according to the website.
Provident Films specializes in backing good faith-based movies, so I wonder what sort of abortion-themed films NARAL expects Provident to support other than pro-life.
After all, NARAL has the rest of the liberal film industry in its camp, even if they typically write pro-life story lines these days (Waitress, Knocked Up, Juno). Abortion apparently isn’t a money-maker. Even last year’s Ides of March, starring George Clooney and Ryan Gosling, portrayed abortion in a terrible light.
But I digress. Here’ s another good headline sure to antagonize pro-choicers, particularly given the news outlet, whose editors probably had a hard time with it as well…
I spoke with co-writer and co-director Jon Erwin about his film and the NARAL controversy today. As I’ve previously mentioned, Jon and I met in Washington during the March for Life this past January.
If NARAL is vexed by donations being made to pregnancy care centers, which exist solely to help mothers and their preborn children in crisis situations, I expect NARAL will blow a gasket to learn Jon made a generous donation to help sustain this blog, although it came from his personal account.
“We want to support those who are making a difference,” Jon explained (pictured on left, with brother Andy on right). “Yours is a voice that needs to be supported, as do so many others. So we just write checks sporadically to worthy people and projects.”
The Every Life is Beautiful Fund will receive donations from the Erwin brothers when October Baby’s royalties come in. Jon said NARAL’s complaints don’t represent any sort of danger and “just shows we’re hitting a nerve” and also that the film’s intent, to battle apathy, had done its job.
On that vein, I asked Jon if and how October Baby has changed his life.
“I feel like the film moved me from a Republican pro-life pacifist to a pro-life activist,” Jon responded. “There is a whole generation of us who were like that.
“But then I was introduced to the reality of an abortion survivor when I heard Gianna Jessen’s story,” Jon continued. “I did not realize those two words – abortion survivor – could fit together. They ran me over like a Mac truck. Then I started studying the issue and decided change is more possible than we think. I think I’ve become a bit of a zealot, but I think that happens to just about everyone who studies the issue of abortion.”