Hollywood filmmaker DeVon Franklin and worship leader Cory Asbury are teaming up to turn the popular song "Reckless Love" into a feature film.
Based on Asbury’s difficult relationship with his father, the movie will explore how that vital relationship impacted the singer’s personal view of God.
Asbury, who released the Top Christian Billboard hit "Reckless Love" in January 2018, has become a household name in worship music. The title track of his first solo album also hit No. 1 on Billboard's Hot Christian Songs Chart and continues to be sung in churches globally.
The song spent 68 weeks on the Hot Christians Songs chart and has over 300 million total streams. The video also has more than 125 million views on YouTube.
“WE’RE MAKING A MOVIE! As many times as I tried to run from it, this thing just kept coming after me,” the singer announced on social media.
Asbury was approached by Franklin, the Christian filmmaker behind “Miracles of Heaven,” “Breakthrough” and the animated Christmas film “The Star.” When he was asked to share his story, however, the musician revealed that he was hesitant.
"When DeVon called me in the summer of 2018 to discuss the possibility of making a Reckless Love movie, I had every intention of telling him, 'Thanks, but no thanks,'" Asbury wrote on Facebook. "If you know me, you know how highly I value authenticity & realness, so taking advantage of the success of a song God had freely given me felt a bit exploitative."
Asbury said he wanted to treasure the authenticity of the song and at the same time, he did not want to hurt his father in any way by publicly sharing his life story.
"I wanted to protect & preserve its purity at all costs, which in my mind, meant NOT 'selling out' to cool opportunities that came my way," the member of Bethel Music explained. "I was also mindful of the fragility of my relationship with my dad (upon which parts of the initial story were predicated) & I didn't want to expose him (or myself) in an untimely manner."
Franklin then said something to the worshiper that made the difference in helping him make the decision to move ahead with the film.
Franklin said a phrase “that really struck my heart & caused me to see beyond myself… ‘Cory, what if this film is bigger than you & your story? What if it brings healing to your dad & dads all across the world?’” Asbury recalled.
The North Carolina native then flew back home to meet with his dad and seek permission to tell their story.
“We wept together. It was the first step toward healing our relationship,” Asbury explained of their meeting. “Needless to say, I was listening to what God might want to do through the whole thing.”
The filmmaker also shared the news online.
“RECKLESS LOVE by my brother @coryasbury is one of the most emotional and transcendent songs I’ve ever heard. It overwhelms you with the reminder of how powerful the love of Christ really is. It’s a song that haunts you and holds you,” Franklin said on Instagram.
The California movie producer has been committed to bringing inspiring stories to the big screen and he said Asbury’s story behind the song really inspired him to want to create a film about it.
“I’m beyond grateful for the opportunity and thankful to my other brother @israelhoughton who helped make the connection and will be joining as Executive Producer of the movie,” Franklin announced.
He said the film will “bless” many.
With much success also comes criticism. “Reckless Love,” the tune, also received a lot of pushback from Christians who took issue with calling God’s perfect love “reckless.”