Facing the Giants (2006) merges both football and faith into an inspirational Christian film. Directed by and starring Alex Kendrick as Grant Taylor, this movie about a high school football team asks viewers, “Do you bring your best every day?” Facing the Giants is a movie that reminds its viewers, “Never Give Up, Never Back Down, Never Lose Faith.”
The two brothers who wrote, directed, and produced the movie are Stephen and Alex Kendrick, who are from Albany GA. Stephen works at Albany’s Sherwood Baptist Church as a senior associate pastor while Alex serves in the position of Associate Pastor of Media. The brothers founded Kendrick Brothers Production company after working very closely with their church’s own production company, Sherwood Pictures, where they wrote, directed and produced four Christian-based films.
The movie includes team members from the local school football team. Most of the people who worked on the movie were unpaid members of the Sherwood Baptist Church congregation. The church’s Sunday School classes arranged for food to be delivered. No official wardrobe was used. People wore their own clothes to help keep the costs down. The movie used unknown volunteers to write, direct, and produce the final product. For the game sequences, real area high school teams were used. The only external help they got came from a few expert filmmakers who showed them how to properly make the movie.
According to a story about the movie on the Creative COW.net site, writer/director Alex Kendrick acquired veteran cinematographer for NFL Films Bob Scott for the position of director of photography. Facing the Giants was shot with just one camera. Scott equipped the camera with a Pro 35 lens adapter and Panavision lenses. According to Scott, with enough light he knew he could get the VariCam to do what he wanted it to do. Scott was worried about there not being enough light, especially shooting the night scenes. Scott reconsidered as shooting progressed, because he saw that he did not need to “compensate for video.” The VariCam worked well in low light areas.
One challenge that the brothers experienced while filming was shooting the football scenes with just one camera, and having to film scenes over and over again. In an interview with the Dove Foundation, Stephen Kendrick said of the filming, “To shoot numerous football games with one camera is extremely difficult. It’s not just difficult for us behind the camera, it’s also difficult for the team as they had to run the same play ten times so that we could get ten different angles. The same guys are getting tackled and they’re tired and we’re shooting one scene right after another and that was difficult at times.”
Provident Films came into the picture when Sherwood got in touch Provident Music Group, a Nashville-based music label, for permission to use songs by Provident artists Third Day and Casting Crowns. Provident's president requested a routine viewing before publishing approval was...