Dallas Jenkins

July 9, 2018 by  
Filed under Book and Movie Interviews

dallas jenkins

By Don Parker  

Our featured interview for this month involves a well known name in the world of Christian Entertainment–the last name anyway.  Dallas Jenkins is the son of Jerry Jenkins, one of the co-authors of Left Behind fame.  I believe his name is going become familiar to Christian movie-goers soon.  I hope to review Midnight Clear, his newest movie, in the near future and help do my part.

Here's his bio:

Dallas Jenkins produced the $2 million independent Hometown Legend at the age of 25 and supervised every aspect of the production, from the completion of the script to the distribution. Dallas made his directing debut with the short film Cliché, which FilmThreat.com called "Fast and funny…ingenious," and his latest short film, Midnight Clear, starring Stephen Baldwin, won a Crystal Heart Award from the Heartland Film Festival and was the opening night selection of the San Diego Film Festival. In 2006, he was the Co-Executive Producer of "Though None Go With Me," a movie based on his father's book that aired on The Hallmark Channel.  His feature directing debut, also called Midnight Clear, is based on the short film and has been featured in over a dozen film festivals, including winning the Cinequest Film Festival award for "Best First Feature" and the "Audience Choice" award at the Kansas International Film Festival.  It's currently available on DVD from Lionsgate.
TCP: What do you see in the future of Christian movies in general?
Dallas: It all depends on the quality level.  Until someone makes a truly great film from a faith-based perspective, one that captures audiences and critics, the current state will continue where studios are making a high amount of lower budget faith-based films.  Hopefully, like in Christian music, the Christian film world will continue to get better and more relevant.

TCP: Can you tell us what Jenkins Entertainment will be working on in the next
couple of years – the Lord willing?
Dallas: Our passion project is "Mountain," based on the true story from the book, "The Man Who Moved a Mountain."  It's such a great story, and it would make a great film.  We're also developing my Dad's book series "Soon," and hopefully the release of "Midnight Clear" will go well.

TCP: What kind of role does prayer play in the writing, directing,
and producing of your films?  Has you encountered anything that smacked of miraculous in producing any of your work?  
Dallas: Well, any time a film is completed and watchable it's a miracle!  I always pray on every project that God will give us wisdom to make good choices on our projects, to remain calm and comforted during any problems, and to have an opportunity to show Jesus to people in an industry where Christians are few and far between.  God has answered all of those prayers over and over.
TCP: How hard is it to put your ego off to the side and let the Lord
work through you and let constructive criticism help you to improve the
quality of your movies?
Dallas: Honestly, that's something I pursue daily, and something that I think is vital to succeed in this business.  We must not only be welcome to criticism, we should seek it out.  We should surround ourselves with smart people who will be honest and tell us where we need improvement at every stage of the production, so that hopefully we won't hear these same problems from a critic or audience member.
TCP: What percentage of your work would you consider ministry (as opposed to simply a career)?  
Dallas: Well, everything should ultimately be ministry, even if that means simply pursuing excellence in my career.  But there are some days when we have to simply focus on getting the job done on time and on budget that day, and there isn't any time for spiritual conversations or explicit "ministry."  But in everything I do, I try to have integrity, passion, and kindness, which I consider a ministry.  In the meantime, I try to build deep relationships with as many people as possible, because ministry is the main reason I'm in this business.
TCP: How did you end up in films instead of following in your father's footsteps as a novelist?
Dallas: I've had a passion for films since high school, and I think my desire to tell stories is obviously influenced by my Dad.  He's also a film enthusiast, so they cross over.  And of course, we wrote a novel together with "Midnight Clear," which turned out great.
TCP: How hard has it been for you to step out of your dad's shadow and feel you got where you are on talent and not on birthright?  Can you relate to a writer or actor who has to fight to gain any recognition in the entertainment world?  
Dallas: I can certainly relate to anyone who has to fight to gain recognition in the entertainment world, because I still don't have any.  I don't mind being in my Dad's shadow, and I'm aware that I've gotten some opportunities that I wouldn't have otherwise gotten if I weren't his son.  But you still have to deliver when you get those opportunities, and while we've had some moderate success and have made some films we're proud of, I certainly haven't broken out yet or made the GREAT films we want to make.  But we hope and pray we'll get there eventually.
You can visit the website for Jenkins Entertainment at http://www.jenkins-entertainment.com

About the Author:  Donald James Parker is a novelist and computer programmer who resides in Puyallup, Washington.  You can check out his website at www.donaldjamesparker.com?tcp


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