After more than three decades of developing faith-based television and film projects, producers Carol Spann Mathews and Tom Newman set out to create a feature film that would offer a uniquely authentic, accessible message of hope. With a team of writers, they spent 19 months crafting HOME RUN, the story of alcoholic baseball star Cory Brand and his journey through fame, rock bottom and redemption. HOME RUN provides a candid look at addiction and transformation, inviting audiences to examine their own struggles and consider the possibility of recovery through Christ.
Mathews and Newman were committed to delivering this invitation as organically and credibly as possible, which led them to incorporate a global, Christ-centered 12-step recovery program called Celebrate Recovery into the story. Since 1991, 19,000 churches across the country have participated in Celebrate Recovery. More than 800,000 individuals have progressed through the program, tackling the once-taboo topics of addiction and abuse in a supportive church setting.
In order to truly understand and depict the “real” Celebrate Recovery, each member of the HOME RUN production team journeyed through the program as participants. They also worked closely with Norma Murphy, the Oklahoma state representative for Celebrate Recovery, to select compelling, real testimonials shared by other program participants. By integrating the testimonials and their own personal discoveries into the script, they created a powerfully realistic experience for their protagonist…and helped shine the spotlight on the Celebrate Recovery movement.
“We want people who feel imprisoned by their choices or habits to know they don’t have to carry that burden alone anymore,” said Mathews. “We hope people will sit in the theater and see themselves, and will consider that whatever holds them back, God can heal it. Change is possible.”