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  • Writer's pictureThomas Bonifield

"Unsung Hero" Releases in Theaters This Week

Updated: Apr 23

The movie tells the coming-to-America story of the Australian family that gave us Christian music acts For King + Country and Rebecca St. James.

Co-director and lead actor Joel Smallbone (right) appears in a scene with the rest of his character's on-screen family in "Unsung Hero."  Image:  Kingdom Story Company/Lionsgate.
Co-director and lead actor Joel Smallbone (right) appears in a scene with the rest of his character's on-screen family in "Unsung Hero." Image: Kingdom Story Company/Lionsgate.

Best-known for his considerable talent as a musician, Joel Smallbone is having his coming out party as a filmmaker with Unsung Hero. He is wearing many hats in this autobiographical picture that marks his directorial debut (a joint effort with Christian movie genre veteran Richard Ramsey), because he also co-wrote it and plays the part of his real-life father, David.


A digital movie poster for "Unsung Hero."
A digital movie poster for "Unsung Hero." Image: Kingdom Story Company/Lionsgate/from Instagram.

Now 39-years-old, Joel Smallbone and his family moved from their home country of Australia to Nashville, Tennessee back in 1991, as David sought a fresh start in the United States. The music promotor soon fell on hard times, however, because the job he was pursuing in Music City did not pan out.


It was at that moment that his wife and the mother of their seven children, Helen - played by Australian actress Daisy Betts - came to the fore, rallying the family and becoming the unsung hero of the picture's title. Eventually, several of their young ones - first, daughter Rebecca St. James as a solo act, and then sons Joel and Luke, as For King + Country, hit it big in the world of Contemporary Christian music...the brothers' band remains among the genre's very top acts to this day.


The picture is executive produced by another Christian brother team, Andrew and Jon Erwin and their Kingdom Story Company through its partnership with Lionsgate studio. It also stars Candace Cameron Bure, an outspoken Believer who is the headline actress and Chief Content Officer at Great American Family channel; she serves as one of the executive producers on this film, too.


Unsung Hero is set to roll out in theaters across North America on Friday, April 26th. In the meantime, you can get a better feel for what to expect from the trailer below.



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