Bella Pro-Life Movie Producer Promoting New Positive Films

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Oct 24, 2011   |   4:12PM   |   Washington, DC

The producer of the critically and publicly-acclaimed pro-life movie Bella has started a new project to promote movies that contain the same sort of positive values-affirming message, suitable for movie-goers looking for alternatives to the typical Hollywood fare.

Jason Jones has launched Movie to Movement to move the movie-going experience in a positive direction and he recently sat down with the BeliefNet web site to talk about what he’s doing.

JASON JONES: Well, Movie to Movement is actually the fruit of Bella. With Bella, in order to get distribution, we really had to build out an entire network of support. Even after winning the Toronto Film Festival we really didn’t have distribution, so we just went and built this massive grass roots network of support for the film. And then we found distribution and Bella was a tremendous success both theatrically and on DVD.  And when Bella was in theaters, we would pray every morning that women who were pregnant and considering an abortion would buy a ticket. And, after the theatrical release and it went to DVD, I said let’s use these networks to provide DVDs to pregnancy centers.

We started Movie to Movement and our first program was the Bella Hero Program (using money from the sale of the DVDs to fund screenings at crisis pregnancy centers, universities and prisons).  But, then I realized, it took us years and a lot of hard work to build that grassroots network that made Bella such a success and I said…there are lot of young people with films that could benefit from this network, films that promote truth, beauty, goodness and human dignity. And I said we need to make sure that those films succeed. And that’s where Movie to Movement came from — this idea that, as a nonprofit, we would promote films that promote human dignity.

But we would also start producing films. The first short film we produced, Crescendo, was just awarded the Crystal Heart Award last week at the Heartland Film Festival.

Crescendo is a short film…a beautiful film. It’s set in Germany in the 1770′s and it tells the story of a woman who makes a decision and that decision changes human history. It’s a true story. It changes your life, it changes my life  and it changed human history. In fact, her choice will continue to grow and change the world for the rest of time.
Jones talked about how his experience in campaigns and elections translated into an effective grassroots campaign to make Bella not just a pro-life success but a national success as well.
JASON JONES: My background is in political organizing. I’ve worked in political campaigns from the state house to the White House.

I’ve worked for (former senator now Kansas governor Sam) Brownback…and several other campaigns across the country…Politics is local and the most important thing in any campaign, to me, is the precinct captain. The precinct captain is that person responsible for that precinct to make sure you get out the vote. And, with Bella, we had theater captains. We had market captains whose responsibility it was to make sure people came out to the theater. It was their personal responsibility.

I would say that we run it exactly like a political campaign. There’s no difference. And, I will say this, as a Catholic, whether it’s politics or art, my goal is to honor and promote human dignity. If we achieve all of our political objectives but we don’t impact the culture…we won’t accomplish anything. I think that winning the battle in Hollywood is a necessary condition to winning the culture war.