What’s next in the LDS film genre? We’ve had documentaries and dramas about missionaries and pioneers. We’ve had biographies on famous Mormons. We’ve had war dramas. And we’ve had numerous comedies based on Mormon pop culture. There is also a lot of interest in bible stories in Christian cinema and even mainstream Hollywood too. However, I think there is plenty of room for new ideas in the genre; here are a few concepts that I think might be interesting to explore.
My first suggestion is a Mormon version of the film My Big Fat Greek Wedding. There have been some plays based on this concept, but I think a feature film would be more appropriate. The film could be light-hearted and yet provide a thoughtful portrayal of how Mormons view marriage and how others view those beliefs. There are a lot of different approaches that could be taken.
My second proposal is a docudrama surrounding the events of the revelation on the priesthood—extending it to all worthy male members of the Church. The film could examine a number of viewpoints. There are those who never thought the priesthood would be extended to black members of the Church, perhaps some who may have opposed to it and may or may not have experienced a change of heart. There are those who were praying for the change, including Church leadership. It would be interesting to see their viewpoints. It would also be interesting to see the viewpoints of the black members, who awaited the blessings of the priesthood. There are a lot of misconceptions about blacks receiving the priesthood that are clarified on lds.org, and it would be helpful to raise awareness in a mainstream medium as well.
Finally, there have been some good dramas and documentaries about the Mormon pioneers in which the Mormon Battalion is referenced, and I think a drama focusing solely on the Mormon Battalion would be interesting. It would be interesting to feel what it was like to be a member of the Mormon Battalion through a dramatic depiction of individuals involved in the company.
These are some concepts that I have thought about. Someone suggested that they would like to see more movies about Mormons who live in countries other than the United States. Freetown told the story of native Liberian missionaries and it was well-received. What other stories could be told besides those surrounding missionary experiences. Certainly there are many stories to explore about the church getting started in foreign countries. What was it like to be one of the first members of the church in Russia? What was it like to be a member in Hong Kong after communist China took it back? There are plenty of experience in upheavals, revolutions, disasters, and civil strife that could be explored.
What would you like to see done next?