A movie filmed in Birmingham earlier this year is set to appear in theaters beginning on Friday.
The movie, "The Shift" was directed by Brock Heasley and produced by Angel Studios, a Christian media company based in Utah.
Its cast includes Neal McDonough, Kristoffer Polaha and Sean Astin, known for his roles as Rudy in the 1993 football film of the same name and Samwise Gamgee in Peter Jackson's cinema rendition of J.R.R. Tolkien's "Lord of the Rings" trilogy.
"The Shift" is a dystopian thriller in which the main character, Kevin (Polaha), meets a man known as The Benefactor (McDonough), who offers him wealth and power. When Kevin refuses, he must escape an alternate totalitarian reality to get back to the world he knew among infinite other possibilities.
Though faith-based, the production studio hopes the film can reach nonbelievers and encourage people to hold onto hope in the face of hardship.
Angel Studios used crowdfunding to finance original productions, allowing investors to purchase shares in the company and its titles. The studio's content can be viewed for free on its website, but some titles are available elsewhere.
Beginning in 2021, its television series "The Chosen," was the largest crowdfunded entertainment project in history until it was surpassed by another Agenl Studios project, "David." the studio released the film "Sound of Freedom" last summer, which grossed over $230 million and is now considered one of the most successful independent films in history.
Heasley spoke to 1819 News in February when filming.
He said that he and his crew filmed "The Shift" primarily in Birmingham but also in Mountain Brook and Bessemer. The production crew initially intended to film in Georgia, which has recently become a hotbed for the film industry. However, the crew made a last-minute call to move production to Alabama.
Heasley said he also hopes the film can appeal to a mass audience. He intends 'The Shift' to be, first and foremost, a science fiction thriller. The faith elements are more subtle. Nevertheless, Kevin's experience, like Job in the Bible, demonstrates what happens after Christians experience the goodness and mercy of God.
You can find tickets for "The Shift" here.
You can also view the trailer on YouTube:
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