Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Stephen Baldwin tours Cinematic Arts

The actor, director, producer and author returned to Liberty Thursday after speaking in Convocation in 2009

actor — Baldwin (right) met with Dean Norman Mintle of Communication & Creative Arts before touring the Zaki Gordon Cinematic Arts Department. Photo credit: Ruth Bibby

Actor — Baldwin (right) met with Dean Norman Mintle of Communication & Creative Arts before touring the Zaki Gordon Cinematic Arts Department. Photo credit: Ruth Bibby

Stephen Baldwin believes there is a story to be told in Alaska, and he intends to do just that with his new reality-format television show, “Alaska: Heart
and Soul.”

Baldwin, an experienced actor who appeared on NBC’s “Celebrity Apprentice” as well as at Liberty University Convocation in 2009, returned to Lynchburg Thursday, Sept. 5 for a tour of the Zaki Gordon Cinematic Arts Department. Baldwin and the show’s production team also stopped by the offices of Chancellor Jerry Falwell, Jr. and Communication & Creative Arts Dean Norman Mintle throughout the day.

Brandon Pickett, a Liberty alumnus and executive producer of the show, shared the vision that the team has for “Alaska: Heart and Soul.”

“The … series is based around real life people living in Alaska, and there’s a faith base to it,” Pickett said. “So it’s faith-based in that they’re doing humanitarian work and God’s work in Alaska.”

According to him, each of the six shows they are planning to shoot will include Baldwin interacting with a different Alaska native, giving viewers a glimpse of what living in Alaska is really like.

“Every episode has Stephen learning something, changing along the way, but he does it through adventure and humor,” Pickett said.

The show’s producer and director, Herb Kossover, said that many networks are currently looking for the next breakthrough reality television show. One of those networks, Turner Broadcasting System (TBS), plans to acquire or produce at least 30 new television shows in the next three years, Kossover said.

Whether or not TBS is the show’s final destination, Baldwin said that he is fully committed to making a show that TBS or any other network would be interested in picking up.

“When you create a half-hour reality formatted program that has the right heart and soul, I want to go big or go home,” Baldwin said. “I want to make six episodes.”

According to Pickett, the recent popularity of the History Channel’s series “The Bible” and A&E’s “Duck Dynasty” has led to an increase in secular networks’ interest in faith-based shows.

“Without question, the Christian faith will be solidly represented,” Baldwin said. “The volume of that, we can determine in postproduction how loud or soft we make that.”
A sneak peak of the show can be seen under the title “Alaska: Heart and Soul” on vimeo.com.

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