The new American Little Boy movie, an upcoming drama, directed by Smithsonian Institute Award Winning Director Alejandro Gómez Monteverde (Bella), and written by Monteverde and Pepe Portillo, promises to make a big splash in 2015.
It features an all-star cast and two Oscar nominated actors including Emily Watson, Tom Wilkinson, as well as Kevin James, Ben Chaplin, Michael Rapaport, Cary Tagawa, Ted Levine, David Henrie, Eduardo Verastegui and Jakob Salvati, the 7-year old lead actor who delivered an extraordinary Oscar caliber performance.
The film is executive produced by Roma Downey and Mark Burnett, the producers of the hit movie “Son Of God”, and the upcoming remake of “Ben-Hur”. Little Boy is produced by Eduardo Verastegui, Leo Severino, Alejandro Monteverde, Emilio Azcarraga, Bernardo Gomez, Micky Ohare and Sean Wolfington.
Mark Joseph, an award-winning film and music producer, author, columnist and founder of MJM Entertainment Group, has kindly supplied the story line for the ASSIST News Service, so here it is:
Pepper Flint Busbee, nicknamed “Little Boy” by the folks in his town, is constantly ridiculed and bullied due to his unusually short stature. The bullying and nicknames do not bother him in the slightest, however, because he finds every comfort a child could need in the unique relationship he shares with his father. The two are inseparable. Little Boy considers his dad his best, and only, friend.
Consequently, his world is shattered when his Dad enlists to fight against the Japanese in the Pacific. Pepper’s life pauses as he awaits word of James’ promised return from the war. His hope vanishes when the Busbee family receives word that James has been captured and taken as a prisoner of war by the Japanese.
Inspired by the supernatural powers of his comic book hero, “Ben Eagle”, and a sermon of the town’s pastor where the preacher announces that with “faith the size of a mustard seed you can move mountains”; Pepper is convinced he can garner the power to achieve the impossible – end the war and return his father home safely.
As “Little Boy” sets off on his quest, the realities of the hatred engendered by war are brought home as the only Japanese in the small town returns after being released from a nearby internment camp. Mr. Hashimoto, the Japanese-American gardener, returns home with hatred. The entire town sees him as the enemy, particularly Pepper who can’t help but feel that Hashimoto is the personification of the very ones that hold his father prisoner.
In a fit of loathing, Pepper attempts to burn down Hashimoto’s house and finds himself in front of the town’s spiritual leader, Father Oliver, who is assigned the task of doling out Pepper’s punishment.
Father Oliver assigns Pepper a list of “good works” to help temper his hate. Pepper however, connects the list with the “supernatural power of faith” that Father Oliver spoke of previously – the same power that can move mountains.
The list consists of: Feeding the hungry, Clothing the naked, Sheltering the homeless, Visiting the sick, Visiting those in prison, and Burying the dead. Father Oliver adds an essential item – befriend Hashimoto. He explains that good works are to no avail if done with even the slightest hate.
Convinced, in his own head, that if he finished the list he will be endowed with the power to bring his father back, Pepper attempts to befriend Hashimoto. In so doing, the two eventually become inseparable, and Hashimoto mentors his young friend in what he believes to be the only true faith; faith in oneself.
Hashimoto’s empirical, rational worldview is pitted against Father Oliver’s idealism and philosophical perspective, though the two are great friends. Their discourse is the dialectic background to a series of apparently supernatural events that happen in connection with Pepper’s efforts.
Pepper, for his part, becomes convinced that he actually has supernatural powers. He is determined that he can finally end the war , even though there is one item on the list that he has yet to complete: Bury the dead – the very item that will become the trial by fire of Little Boy’s nascent faith.
The Little Boy movie, produced by Eduardo Verastegui, Leo Severino, Alejandro Monteverde, Emilio Azcarraga, Bernardo Gomez, Micky Ohare & Sean Wolfington, will make you laugh, cry and think about what matters most.
It is scheduled to be released on February 27, 2015, by Open Road Films, so don’t miss it. It certainly promises to make a big splash.
Dan Wooding, 73, is an award-winning journalist who was born in Nigeria of British missionary parents, now living in Southern California with his wife Norma, to whom he has been married for 50 years. They have two sons, Andrew and Peter, and six grandchildren who all live in the UK. He is the founder and international director of ASSIST (Aid to Special Saints in Strategic Times) and the ASSIST News Service (ANS) and he hosts the weekly “Front Page Radio” show on the KWVE Radio Network in Southern California and which is also carried throughout the United States and around the world. He is the author of some 45 books, the latest of which is a novel about the life of Jesus through the eyes of his mother called “Mary: My Story from Bethlehem to Calvary”.