'Midrange' Director Wanted to Look Past Dogma4 Jun, 2014 By: Chris Tribbey
For Jason Fields, Midrange marks a lot of firsts.
It was his first script, his first time directing and first time acting (much less starring) in anything.
But his writing, directing and acting chops were less of a concern to him than getting his faith-based message across, in an enlightening, entertaining and thoughtful way.
“I think every person wants to know that there’s a reason they were created, something beyond themselves,” he said. “I think if you show a situation, a story with characters who are real, who are searching for answers themselves, and that it’s more experiential to them, than just something that’s just been packaged, it becomes a relationship, more than religion.”
Fields stars as Damon Sharp, a college basketball player on a warpath to the pros. But when the college game is over, and he returns home to find his brother mired in drugs and alcohol, and his mother helpless and depressed, Sharp’s easy path breaks apart. And when temptation gets the better of him, a downward spiral ensues.
It may only be faith that’s able to get him and others back on track.
To beef up the concept, Fields had the benefit of recruiting NBA stars Allan Houston, Anthony Tolliver, Kelenna Azubuike, Austin Daye, Greivis Vasquez and others to appear in the film, to make both the story and message flow. “Everyone was an amazing help,” Fields said.
All in all, he thinks his first film — in every sense of the word — managed to get the right message about faith across, he said.
“I think it’s pretty far reaching, and of course some people are going to reject the idea, but I think if they keep their hearts open to truth, then that’s where they might end up experiencing what Jesus did for them,” he said. “We’re in a constant search for truth, and if our hearts are open, we’re going to find it.”
Cinedigm releases Midrange June 10.