From the Prince of Egypt to The Prince of Peace: Both Are Winners at Movieguide Awards Spiritually Based Film And Television Programs Win The Epiphany Prizes (For Most Inspiring Film And TV Program) At Christian Oscars.
by Dan Wooding of ASSIST Communications
HOLLYWOOD, CA (March 19, 1999)—THE PRINCE OF EGYPT, DreamWorks SKG, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Executive Producer and the “HERE COMES SANTA CLAUS,” segment of the 7TH HEAVEN series, Aaron Spelling Productions and the WB Network, came out as winners of the prestigious Epiphany Prizes for most inspiring film and TV program at the MOVIEGUIDE awards at the Universal, Universal Hilton City, California, on March 18.
“Each prize was worth $25,000 and was given by the John Templeton Foundation for the movie and television program that was more than just morally inspiring or humanitarian,” explained Dr. Ted Baehr, publisher of MOVIEGUIDE, the nation's family-friendly guide to movies and entertainment. “They must also be spiritually uplifting and inspiring and result in a great increase in man's love of God or man's understanding of God.
“The winners went from the 'Prince of Egypt to the 'Prince of Peace—the Old Testament to the New Testament,” added Dr. Baehr, who is also chairman of The Christian Film and Television Commission.
During his much-awaited Report to the Entertainment Industry, Dr. Baehr explained that G-rated movies grossed on average ($44, 599, 907) 234% more than R-rated movies averaged ($13, 358, 749), which is up 1,014% from 1997, when G-rated movies grossed 21% more than R-rated movies. Thus, G-rated movies performed more than twice as much as R-rated movies.
He concluded by saying, “It is our prayer that, with each passing year, we will be able to report on increasing industry profits made on films that uplift society and honor traditional family life and God.
“In reality, however, the bottom line cannot be measured in dollar signs or in stars and pluses. It can be measured only in a society that moves toward goodness, justice and the resulting blessings of God.”
THEY WORE WHITE HATS
The gala awards program, which was hosted by Pat Boone and Nancy Stafford, also honored 100 years of worthwhile movies and entertainment. In a special tribute called THEY WORE WHITE HATS, three great cowboy stars who died last year—Bob “Tex” Allen, Gene Autry and Roy Rogers—were posthumously honored.
Also during the ceremony, Shirley Jones was given a Lifetime Achievement Award for her career in wholesome movies and television. She has starred in such movie hits as OKLAHOMA and THE MUSIC MAN as well as the long-running TV series, THE PARTRIDGE FAMILY.
Marty Ingels, her husband, spoke about her as “an All-American icon to family values.” He added, “She is a special person who has given to the world for 40 years.”
Dr. Bill Bright, founder and president of Campus Crusade for Christ, speaking of Ted Baehr in a message carried in the awards program, said on behalf of his wife Vonette and himself, “Congratulations and thank you, for you have served us all well as a positive influence on the motion picture industry. You have devoted yourself to change, and your devotion has made a big difference. Continue to instill morality, decency and family values in the minds of those who are involved in the creation and making of movies.”
Craig Smith, President of Swiss America, explained why he believes this event is important. “We want to support MOVIEGUIDE'S efforts in helping Hollywood to produce better movies, so we don't have to see a lot of the garbage that we see on the big screen” he said. “I am convinced that one of the reasons the garbage is there is because of the void the Christians have created by being so busy in cursing the darkness. We should be busy lighting lights, and that what we are trying to do through the MOVIEGUIDE awards.”
AND THE WINNERS ARE…
The Ten Best 1998 Family Movies, winners of the “Teddy Bear” Awards:
“The Faith and Values Award” went to THE RIDE, from World Wide Pictures, as the year's Best Special Feature Film.
“The Kerygma Award” went to VEGGIETALES CHRISTMAS SPECTACULAR, by Big Idea Productions, for Creatively Communicating the Good News of Salvation to Mankind, telecast by PAX-TV.
“The Golden Eagle Award” went to COMMON GROUND, from North American Mission Board, an outstanding documentary on the influence of Billy Graham and his personal ministry, telecast by ABC-TV.
The Movieguide Award for Excellence in a Foreign Feature or Documentary:
FUMI: A TOOL IN THE HAND OF GOD, from Harvest Time Ministries, Japan
The Epiphany Prizes (for Most Inspiring Film and TV Program):
Film: THE PRINCE OF EGYPT, DreamWorks SKG, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Executive Producer.
Television: HERE COMES SANTA CLAUS, (7TH HEAVEN series), Aaron Spelling Productions and the WB Network.
Dr. Baehr is next scheduled to address the International Roman Catholic Bishop's “Conference on the Family” in Manila, Philippines, March 25-27. He will be speaking on how Christians can become media wise, which is based on his latest book, THE MEDIA-WISE FAMILY.
For further information about the awards gala or MOVIEGUIDE, the biweekly, highly respected movie guide known for its comprehensive family-oriented film and television reviews and commentaries, please call: (800) 899-6684, or write: MOVIEGUIDE, P.O. Box 190010, Atlanta, GA 31119 or go one-line at www.movieguide.org.