Kirk Cameron on His New Role in Kendrick Brothers Movie
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LIFEMARK is the first Kendrick Brothers & Kirk Cameron film that’s based on a true story. In the film, we find David (played by Raphael Ruggero), an adopted 18-year-old living a comfortable life. As part of his high school’s wrestling team, David had plans to get a wrestling scholarship to college.
Yet, when he passes out after practice, he’s rushed to the hospital where doctors find he has a condition that causes fluid to build up in his brain. After having surgery to relieve the pressure, David is told he will never wrestle again. Devastated and trying to move forward, he gets a message from the adoption agency that he is now allowed to meet his birth parents since he’s of legal age. When his mom, Melissa (played by Dawn Long), sends him a message on social media, his world is turned upside down.
David’s adoptive parents, Jimmy (Kirk Cameron) and Susan Chyron (Rebecca Rogers), encourage David to meet his birth mom. As Melissa’s story is revealed, the hardship she endured as a pregnant teenager trying to decide if she should abort or keep her son, becomes apparent. When Melissa visited an abortion clinic, loud protestors begged her not to take the life of her child. After trying to go through with the abortion, she changed her mind at the last second, only angering the doctor who abruptly left the room without saying a word.
After choosing life and adoption, God’s redemptive power takes center stage as all the families work together towards forgiveness and reconciliation.
TAKING IT PERSONAL
Kirk Cameron’s desire to make this movie was somewhat personal. He spoke about it at the 49th March for Life event in Washinting DC. “This issue of life is very personal for me," he said. "My wife is an adopted child. Chelsea was one doctor appointment away from not existing. Our first four children are also adopted, and if my wife, Chelsea, had not been born, our two natural-born children would not exist either."
Kirk was not raised in a church-going home and described himself as an atheist from a very young age. When he was 14, Kirk had been working in the entertainment business for a few years and landed the role of Mike Seaver on Growing Pains in 1985. Within a few years, it was a hit show on ABC. (On the show, Mike eventually had a girlfriend named Kate MacDonald, played by Chelsea Noble, Kirk’s future wife!)
Soon Kirk had everything he could want and as much money as he wanted to spend. He became a teen heartthrob, appearing on the covers of teen magazines, and was also so convinced there was no God that he laughed at those who said there was. All that changed one afternoon as he went to church and heard the Gospel for the first time. Kirk sat in the back of the church feeling very guilty. His heart was swelling with the hope that a God in heaven saw his sinful heart and would take the punishment for him, forgive him, and welcome him back into a right relationship with Him.
A month later, Kirk, then 17, was sitting in his sports car and asked the Lord into his heart. He told a friend who was a Christian. That friend gave him a Bible which Kirk began to read. Kirk went on to star in many films but has since left mainstream film and television. He continues to work in faith-based productions.
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