TV personality, actress and producer Kathie Lee Gifford is presenting the Bible in a creative way in her new movie “The Way” — and she’s letting Christian singers tell the stories.
Despite being a part of at least two successful talk shows and acting in film and television over the years, Gifford says her current gig — in which she’s able to bring the gospel to a diverse audience — is her “dream job.”
“I loved performing with Regis,” Gifford told Fox News Digital, referring to her longtime co-star Regis Philbin.
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“I love doing the show with Hoda,” she added, referring to Hoda Kotb. “But those weren’t always my dream jobs. My dream job is what I’m doing now. Writing music and writing movies and writing and directing in beautiful places.”
Four years ago, Gifford singer Nicole C. met Mullen and the pair were “going to write a little song,” she explained.
“It culminated in an 11-and-a-half-minute oration called ‘The God Who Sees,'” Gifford said.
The song became a hit on YouTube, racking up millions of views. Its success prompted Gifford to pursue a larger project.
“I realized this is what I want to do for the rest of my life,” she said. “I had to take more stories because they were epic, wonderful stories from the Bible…Nobody had seen the Bible this way.”
Hitting theaters for one night only on Thursday, September 1, the film highlights key Bible stories in a modern way.
“The Way,” from Fathom Events, is a symphonic 75-minute story of the Bible that begins at the beginning of creation and continues through the New Testament, Gifford explained.
The film, which hits theaters for one night only on Thursday, September 1, highlights key Bible stories in a modern way by presenting them with contemporary orchestral arrangements.
The production features an all-star group of artists including Mullen, Danny Gokey, Jimmy Allen, Larry Gatlin, Bibi Winans and more.
Gifford narrates the film (and may sing herself).
Gifford says she never did anything by the book. That’s true when it comes to the casting process.
Although she said she would “absolutely love to have these big, big stars” on the project, God put it in her heart to cast the lesser-known Matt Bager and Julie Roberts to play Abraham and Sarah. Because the couple have a lot in common with their characters.
“Because they understand the pain of being barren,” Gifford said of the couple. “They were … struggling, struggling, struggling with fertility. And I said, ‘Okay, Lord,’ and I just obeyed.”
She recalls how, a few months after they finished filming, the couple called to tell them they were expecting.
“I play/sing the role of Abraham and Julie is Sarah,” Bagar shared on his Instagram page.
“And we filmed pre-pregnancy with Jackson. How amazing is that for the characters we play? Friends, this project is amazing. Don’t miss it!”
“God put this thing on the air,” Gifford told Fox News Digital.
“Moses” didn’t exactly follow a typical audition process. Gifford explains that he found him in his house.
“God’s way is more interesting and more exciting than doing things by rote.”
She remembers Billy Gaines, whom Gifford said she hired to help hang ceiling fans and mirrors in her home, staring at her piano.
“And I said, ‘Will you play?’ And he said, ‘Yes, ma’am.’ Turns out he’s a professional gospel singer.”
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A few years later, Gaines returned home to Gifford, and his musical talent earned him a spot in his new film.
“He was sitting there and he started singing something and I said, ‘You got it. You’re Moses.’ My tackle guy!” she recalled.
“You know, how sweet God is. I don’t do anything by the rule book. Never. God’s way is more interesting and more exciting than rote, [than] Things are going on as usual.”
Everyone in the film has such a story,” she said.
And everyone, agreed to do it for free.
But after some thought, Gifford said, God encouraged her to open her own pocketbook and pay the actors.
“I wrote a check for $10,000 to every single person in it and said, ‘The Lord is going to provide because you’re going to pay for it. You all gave your heart and were willing to do it for free. But in the time of Covid I want to bless you and [help you] Earn some money.”
“You can never outgrow God or outgrow God.”
Gifford added, “You can never outrun or outrun God. He always seems crazy and surprises you.”
Gifford recently hosted the Fox Nation series “The Jesus I know,” in which she talks to several celebrities about their spiritual journey. These celebrities, fans, don’t even know are spiritual.
And that’s where they come from in Hollywood, she says.
“I know as sure as I can [do] Another six series, and I’d love it,” shared Gifford.
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“The Way” is paired with Gifford’s new book, co-authored by Rabbi Jason Sobel, “The God of the Way: A Journey into the Stories, People and Faith That Changed the World Forever.”