Atheist-turned-Christian Lee Strobel said the upcoming "The Case for Christ" film, based on his 1998 best-selling book of the same name, will offer evidence for Jesus' resurrection from the dead.
"They (the film's viewers) will learn two things. People will hear the evidence for Jesus returning from the dead, thus authenticating his claim to being the son of God. Plus, they're going to hear the gospel. They're going to see someone moving out of skepticism into faith," Strobel said in an interview with Daily Herald.
"What I love about the film is that it doesn't preach. Yet, the message of Jesus is woven into it in a creative and very compelling way," he described.
The movie, set for a release on the big screen on April 7, follows Strobel in his investigation of Christianity in 1980, while he was a reporter for the Chicago Tribune.
While the journalist is first seeking to disprove the faith in order to win back his wife, whom he believes is falling into a "cult" because of her new-found Christian belief, he eventually comes to faith after taking a close look at the evidence for Jesus.
Part of that investigation centered on the Shroud of Turin, the 14-foot-long cloth which some believe to be the burial cloth of Jesus before He rose from the dead, and has been the subject of much analysis and discussion.
Strobel's internal struggle caused strife between he and his wife, Leslie, who is portrayed accurately on screen, the former atheist said.
"My first reaction was a sense of embarrassment because the movie shows some of the ugly aspects of my life. It's an honest film that doesn't blink when it shows me drinking too much and having anger issues, and treating people with hostility for thinking differently than I did," he said of his first viewing of the film.
"You wish the story could be sanitized and show only the good stuff. But we didn't want to do a film like that. We wanted to be honest."
Strobel also told potential moviegoers that unlike some other faith-based films, this one is not cringe-worthy.
"I was really impressed with the production quality, the acting, editing, everything. And it was quite an education for us because we'd never been part of a movie before. We feel it really represents our story well."
"The Case for Christ" has been endorsed by some big-name megachurch leaders, including Greg Laurie, senior pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in California.
Laurie said while interviewing the Strobels earlier in March that parts of the film had brought him to tears.
Speaking about the scene where Strobel professes his faith in Jesus Christ, the pastor called it "one of the most powerful moments, it brought me to tears."
Laurie also suggested the film might be a great way to draw nonbelievers who are also struggling with questions of faith.
"I have to say, this is the movie you have been waiting on to take your nonbelieving friend to, especially if your friend happens to be an atheist," he said.