May Olusola and Raschelle Loudenslager sat down recently with lead actor Alan Powell to talk about his role in The SONG a major motion picture was released on September 26, 2014.
THE SONG takes its audience through the real and raw challenges faced by lead character Jed (Alan Powell) as he lives his life in pursuit of fame and significance. It forces viewers to ask themselves the tough question, “What is a man if he achieves the world but loses his soul?”
We both found Alan authentic, smart, talented and engaging. He passionately communicated his deep desire for THE SONG to impact the hearts of its audience and listened intently to each question asked responding with depth and clarity.
RL (Raschelle Loudenslager) Alan, how did you get your start in a film career?
AP (Alan Powell): “I still don’t know why they let me do it, to be honest with you. Don’t tell anybody I said that, it’s my secret. (He says with a wink and a lighthearted laugh.) I have always had a passion for film. Film is what moves me. I started my career in music of course but I‘ve always loved acting. Three summers ago, I got an email and it was this character description about this project. I don’t know if this has ever happened to you or not, but I just knew I was going to be a part of this project. So, I went to this audition and God just took over from there.
I went back to California for the call back and met the director and the producer and the music director. Not long after the director called me and told me I was the guy for the part, he just knew it was me. I got together with my wife and we discussed how we could protect our marriage especially when I was going to play the role of a guy who is unfaithful to his wife. It’s all real life situations and we talked a lot about how we could honor God in our marriage while walking through the situations with this roll. So, it was a really cool process to see how God worked in and through all of it. Now to see the final product is a very rewarding thing.”
MO : “Did you grow up in a Christian Home?”
“I did actually; my Dad is a pastor and has been for my whole life. He’s been pastoring a church in Fort Myers Florida for 15 years. That makes me a PK. I mean there were challenges to it, yes, but honestly there was a lot more good about it. I have a great family.”
RL: Did you meet your wife in Fort Myers? I did. I have known her technically since we were 14 and then we started dating at 17 and I never looked back. And now we have two daughters, a three and one year old. My wife is actually at home taking care of them both now.
RL: How did you protect you marriage through this film?
“I was able to protect my marriage through and through. My wife was the double in the one kissing scene. So, I was kissing my wife. And the honeymoon scene is also her doubling in bed with me the morning after we were married. You will see Jed unable to sleep and looking at her thinking of how blessed he is. In this it’s actually me looking at my wife while playing the role of Jed as he looks at Rose played by my wife. So that look on my face is the most honest look in the film. For us, we needed to do this to make sure our marriage was protected. And to the filmmakers credit they allowed this. Honestly, I thought I might lose the role because of this. I did the callbacks and everything. At the end of the eight hour call back they said we know you have some hesitations because of some of the content. So here is the script, read the full thing. Read it and let us know if there is anything else in it you are uncomfortable with. So I took it a 110 page script home. I started reading it and earmarked every page that had something I was uncomfortable with and not exaggerating here out of 110 pages I marked 70 pages. My initial email to the filmmakers was “Guys thanks for the opportunity to read and help you find the people to play the key parts. I don’t want to insult you, you’ve spent years developing this script. And you will have to change it to such an extent for me at this point to get me to do it.
I sent it and stayed up all night thinking about it. I got a phone call Monday morning at 10:00 am from the director saying listen man; he had not yet read the email, I’ve been talking with the producer and I don’t know what you need changed in the script but we just feel like whatever you need we will figure it out because you are supposed to be the guy. I knew then it was God. He had answered my prayers. I called him back and told him I was sending the notes. And he and I walked through it together and the things that needed to be adjusted, we were able to do it. In a story about treasuring your marriage we did not ask the person who played the lead character to compromise his marriage. I am very proud of this fact. God was really faithful throughout the whole process. In this God was faithful in honoring a decision not to compromise my integrity or my wife’s.
MO: You are from a very interesting background in terms of acting, what inspired you. I know you grew up in a Christian Home but why acting?
“Because it is what moves me. I love music but the medium that had the biggest impact on my life is film. For me the idea I could be a part of doing something that can impact someone else as film has impacted me is exciting and gets me up each day. I didn’t know if I would be good at it, but I wanted to do everything I could do to learn all I could learn so I could find out. Acting is a passion.
MO: What do you hope comes from the film?
RL: And how do you hope it engages others in conversations?”
AP: I think it is a timeless message, which is what I love about it. It is a modern day telling of the life of Solomon which is an old, old, thousands of years, old story. But the message never changes. The point is life is meaningless outside of God. God gives life meaning and God gives life purpose. And it doesn’t mean it’s just for now or was for a thousand years ago. So to me I think when people see THE SONG and walk out of the theaters they will see that fame is fleeting and life is fleeting but God is forever. This is certainly the main message I hope people will take away from it.
RL: What moves you the most about THE SONG?
It is a movie about real life for real people. Jed goes through a lot. He experiences fame and real love. He experiences real love and then gets the thing he wanted most which was fame. And then the thing he wanted most has a way of tempting him which is what fame does. It tempts him to do things he should not be involved with; he cheats on his wife and gets involved with drugs. To me I hope people walk away going “I see what Jed experiences when he gets everything he thought he wanted and maybe that’s also everything I think I might want.” Jed got money, fame, recognition and meaning, but then he realizes it’s all meaningless and the most important thing that really matters is God and purpose and how that matters to his family, his wife and his son.
So I hope when people walk out they ask themselves is there anything in my life that I am striving for that if I actually attain it will be less than I want it to be? Is there something else in my life right now I ought to be focusing on that really matters that maybe I am overlooking? Because I think that is what this story is really about. It’s about redemption, forgiveness, and things that can’t be attained but maybe things we already have. Hopefully, this is something people will take away.
My hope is The Song will do well and resonate with the audience who views it. Hopefully it will inspire them to look inside at what they are driving for and living for and make sure it is toward what really matters.
So, I encourage everyone to go and see THE SONG and to take someone along with them too.