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'Family Camp' actress talks combating darkness in Hollywood through film, 'attacks on Christianity'

'Family Camp'
"Family Camp" will debut in cinemas nationwide on May 13. |

Leigh Allyn-Baker is becoming increasingly concerned about the content Hollywood is marketing to children, which she believes is undeniably “foul-intentioned.”

“The two main companies … that kind of trickle down and own everything, including our media, see an opportunity to indoctrinate children at a very young age for political purposes,” the actress told The Christian Post. “That's what I think is happening. It's to shape a world that moves away from the nuclear family in a Christian home. It really is a foul intention.”

The continued attacks on Christianity, the 50-year-old actress said, sparked a passion inside of her to fight for positive, uplifting content and “not compromise” her beliefs for the sake of her career.

“I've really been very vocal recently about how I see the direction that Hollywood is going. I feel that there is an attack on Christianity, and that makes me really want to be vocal about my faith. I feel that there must be freedom for religion for us to continue to worship in our faith the way that we want to do it. I'm just not going to partake in any of this nonsense anymore.”

Baker speaks from experience. A seasoned actress known for her roles on "Charmed," "Will & Grace" and the Disney Channel sitcom "Good Luck Charlie," the wife and mother revealed she felt pressure to perform in “sexually compromising roles” — something she refused to do.

“It was really nothing more than porn. And I just wasn't going to do it. It was disgusting to me,” she said.

“I've been offered roles … that are very laden with lust and sexuality. And it's something I don't want my kids to see. I'm not going to do it. That doesn't mean that I won't do things that have more adult subjects that aren't geared for kids, but I'm just not going to compromise who I am for a career. I'm just not going to do it.”

Now, the actress, who with her family recently relocated from Los Angeles to Nashville, is starring in the family-friendly comedy “Family Camp,” a film she says reflects her values and beliefs. 

According to the film's synopsis, the family experiences an unplanned adventure after their pastor "encourages the congregation to sign up for a week away at family camp." It's there that "Grace believes she's found the perfect cure for her imperfect clan — even if they'd all rather be anywhere but rustic Camp Katokwah.”

“I'm not going to if (the movie) it doesn't speak to my heart, has a good message and supports a Christian voice. At this point in my career, I'm not interested,” Baker said. “I just see the way the world is going. It used to be, ‘Well, this is not a bad movie, and it's got a good message, so I'll do that.’ But now, it's even further than that. Now, I look deeply at the message and the contents and the subject. And if it's not aligned with my values, I'm just not going to compromise.”

The film, from Roadside Attractions, K-LOVE Films and Provident Films, also stars Tommy Woodard and Eddie James of the comedy duo The Skit Guys. It will debut in cinemas nationwide on May 13.

Rated PG, Baker said she was drawn to the film because of how funny the script was — “I'd never seen a Christian comedy before” — she said, and how it treated Christianity respectfully without proselytizing. 

“There's a lot of rumors about Christianity and Jesus … that just aren't true,” she said. “I just think that it's really important to invite people to the table. The great thing about this is that this movie isn't convincing someone to be a Christian. It's not pushing a religion on someone; it's not beating them over the head with it. At the end of the day, this is a really good, funny movie that everybody will enjoy, no matter what your faith.”

Comedy, she said, is a great way to break down barriers in an increasingly divided society.

“When these faith-based movies are made, a lot of time they're setting the table for people who are already there ready to eat,” she contended. “But we need to set some empty places at the table and invite others to come and join. And I feel that comedy does that. It's not laughing at God, doesn't laugh at Jesus; it's us as humans laughing at ourselves and the foibles that we make, and the crazy walk that we take on this path and how many mistakes we make.”

“Family Camp” promises to be “a laugh-out-loud comedy that is sure to touch the hearts and tickle the funny bones of every family member from 8 to 80.” 

Baker said she’s “excited” to participate in quality faith-based films, adding: “I'm excited to see Christians using their talents and making good movies because you can make a Christian movie all day long, but if it's not a good movie, people are not going to see it. People are going to mock it.”

The environment on the set of "Family Camp" was wildly different from what she saw and experienced in Hollywood too. Baker shared that filmmakers prayed for her and made her feel “loved” and “safe."

“This is a good group of people, and a talented group of people and a wise group of people as far as business development goes. So I really hope that people get out there and support this."

Last week, leaked video footage showed a Disney official bragging about “adding queerness” to children’s programming. The company recently vowed online that "50% of regular and recurring characters across Disney General Entertainment scripted content will come from underrepresented groups" by 2022, including more LGBT characters. 

Earlier this year, Disney Plus, a "family” branded streaming service, started featuring content for mature audiences, including explicit sex scenes and a strip club scene. 

In light of these trends, Baker challenged Christians to support faith-based entertainment, stressing that “this is time for Christians to realize this is where your voice can be heard: They're going to hear it in the box office.”

“I feel that it's important to just have everyone stand firm in their faith,” she emphasized. “It's very important that Christians stand up for all religious freedom too. Let’s not forget why this country was founded. It was a group of people escaping tyranny … so people left and let their faith lead them. That's why this is a free Republic and we need to keep it that way. But people are buckling to fear. Churches are buckling to fear. And this is not the time to buckle. This is the time to stand strong in your faith.”

Leah M. Klett is a reporter for The Christian Post. She can be reached at: leah.klett@christianpost.com

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