Home #Hwoodtimes A Conversation With Film Director/Co-Producer Kyle Portbury about his upcoming film “The...

A Conversation With Film Director/Co-Producer Kyle Portbury about his upcoming film “The Hopeful” Out April 17 & 18

By Judy Shields

Hollywood, California (The Hollywood Times) 04/15/2024 – “This is a very personal project for me,” says Kyle, who directed and co-produced the The Hopeful from a script by Aaron Hartzler and H.G. Sloan. “It’s a love letter to my roots, telling a powerful human story that I am proud to share not only with those who share my beliefs, but also with the many friends, family, and colleagues in my life who hold other views. I wanted to create a work that can stand on its own, about people who anticipated something major — yet had to deal with the fallout when that didn’t pan out. That’s a universal experience, not unique just to faith communities. Everyone has anticipated something only to see it not turn out like they imagined or dreamed it would.”

The Hopeful. The heartfelt and compelling historical drama will be released in over 900 theaters nationwide on April 17 & 18 in partnership with Fathom EventsHope Studios and Kyle Portbury Films. The film boasts a diverse cast and marks the first long form feature from Kyle who is an Emmy Award winning and three-time Australian Director’s Guild nominee.

The Hopeful is the true story of a community whose lives were transformed as they learn what it means to truly wait for Jesus. This sweeping drama, set in 19th century New England, invites audiences of all ages to imagine how hope can change the world.

William Miller’s (Bill Lake) faith is in ruins. After miraculously surviving a fierce battle in the War of 1812, Miller questions why God spared him. His search for wisdom leads to an astonishing prophecy — the world is going to end. The Hopeful unfolds as a story of a man burdened with the knowledge of Christ’s return. Miller’s message resonates with some – even as it is scorned by others. When a young woman named Ellen Harmon (listens to one of his sermons, she is transformed by the message. And through her, witness the message that begins to take hold. Her preaching grows beyond prophecy and develops into a more holistic vision for how Christians should live and worship. We see blossoming the seeds of a new global movement of faith — the Seventh-day Adventist Church.

The Hollywood Times had the opportunity to speak with director Kyle Portbury about how the movie came to the big screen and the cast.

Enjoy our conversation:

Make sure you check your local theatre to see when it is playing and take the whole family to see this amazing true story on the big screen and you can all talk about once you are sitting at the dinner table.  It is an inspirational and moving film that tells the story of one man and his belief in Christ and how others are inspired of his faith and find faith of their own to change lives.

Jonas (photographer Dayne Malan)

For a drama set in the 1800s, one of the most unique choices Kyle made was to collaborate with two-time Grammy Award-winning singer/songwriter Jonas Myrin, who contributes two original songs with mainstream hit potential, “Hope Is on The Way” and “Made for You.” Both songs were written and performed by Myrin specifically for the film.

Release date: April 17, 2024 (USA)
Genre: Drama
Directed by: Kyle Portbury
Written by: Aaron Hartzler · H.G. Sloan
Music by: Michael Price · Blake Robinson
Produced by: Bin Li · Martin Thorne · Kyle Portbury

About Kyle Portbury

Through one of his directing mentors, Bob Bladgen (All Creatures Great and Small), Portbury serendipitously secured his first filmmaking gig as a line producer on a documentary about Marvin Gaye – which put him on the road with the iconic singer’s two sisters. He soon got the opportunity to direct and produce The Mountain Within, a feature length documentary that followed disabled climbers up Mt. Kilimanjaro – an experience that led him to rediscover his acting training and realize that the most critical aspect of filmmaking is the fact that, metaphorically, it’s all about a character’s journey up some sort of mountain and back down again. Over the years, Portbury’s works include the short film Swan Song, a David and Bathsheba allegory; Truth, about abolitionist Sojourner Truth’s speech Ain’t I a Woman, that won him an Emmy; writing on a series of five minute animated shorts Young David for Angel Studios that collectively form a prequel to the 2025 feature film he also wrote on called “David;” and “Beyond the Search,” a 14-part faith based travel series for a global television network that was also dubbed into multiple languages. From 2015-2019, he was also an associate professor of film studies at Southwestern Adventist University in Keene, Texas.