Greg Laurie’s Harvest Ministries has partnered with the filmmakers behind Moms’ Night Out and Woodlawn to bring the feature film Steve McQueen: American Icon to the big screen on September 28.
“This film will be a one-night, nationwide cinematic event that will invade hundreds, perhaps a thousand theaters this fall,” said producer and director Jon Erwin of the Erwin Brothers in an announcement on the Harvest website. “And most importantly, it will create an opportunity for Pastor Greg to use the story of how Steve McQueen found redemption and hope, and offer that same gospel message to the live theater audience.”
Laurie, who recently wrote a book on McQueen that hits bookstores June 13, has shared the story of McQueen’s unexpected conversion and said people young and old were riveted by the story of a troubled boy who became the highest paid movie star in the world, turning to God after being disillusioned by the sheer emptiness of all he’d accumulated and accomplished.
“Steve McQueen, bottom line, was the biggest movie star in the world in the 1960s and ’70s, the ultimate alpha-male of his generation,” Laurie explained in the introduction to his upcoming book, Steve McQueen: The Salvation of an American Icon. “But in December 1979, life slammed on the brakes when he was diagnosed with mesothelioma, a deadly form of cancer caused from exposure to asbestos. He would be dead before another year rolled around.”
But six months before receiving his cancer diagnosis, McQueen quietly gave his life to the Lord on the balcony of an out-of-the-way church in Ventura, California.
“It wasn’t a deathbed conversion,” Laurie noted.
Having always admired McQueen as an actor and all-around “guy’s guy,” Laurie wanted to find out what led McQueen to make a decision that, on its face, seems so at odds with the take-no-prisoners nature of the man often referred to as the “King of Cool.”
For the book, Laurie and co-author Marshall Terrill traveled the country interviewing many of those who knew McQueen best and were with him in his last days.
And the life-changing story that they uncovered through their journey, Laurie said, is “a story McQueen, in his own words, worried he’d never be able to share with the world.”
“Now, almost forty years after his step into heaven, he’ll finally get the chance,” Laurie continued.
“That is the story I want to tell in this film – a story people have never seen before.”
The upcoming movie includes on-camera interviews with many of the same characters mentioned in Laurie’s book as well as current Hollywood icon and avid Steve McQueen fan Mel Gibson.
Laurie’s ministry is encouraging believers to use the film as their opportunity to reach their world for Christ.
“Pray, invite, and bring someone who needs to hear the Gospel with you to the theater,” the ministry stated. “Share the incredible true story that changed the life of an American icon on Thursday, September 28 at a theater near you.”
To stay up to date on theater locations and to receive exclusive behind-the-scenes stories and other information on Steve McQueen: American Icon, click here.
To pre-order the book, Steve McQueen: The Salvation of an American Icon, click here.