What's Next for Ashley Bratcher?
Predictions that her career would suffer for playing the lead in the pro-life Christian film "Unplanned" now seem way off base.
Unplanned provided the breakout role for North Carolina native and Christian actress Ashley Bratcher. In the film, which is based on a memoir by the same name, she plays the lead character, former abortion clinic director-turned-right-to-life-advocate Abby Johnson.
From the writer/director team of Chuck Konzelman and Cary Solomon, the picture is a damning exposé of the immoral conduct and money-grubbing policies of America's abortion business and its mass killing of innocents. The transformation Johnson underwent, however, and Bratcher's powerful portrayal of it, also provide hope of forgiveness and redemption that come through the love of Christ - even for those who have engaged in such heinous actions.
Before Unplanned, Bratcher played mostly smaller roles or in lower-profile films. When this opportunity came along, she decided to take it largely because of her Christian convictions. And that was despite being counseled by friends against doing so because of the power of the pro-abortion lobby and its allies in Hollywood. Bratcher explained the situation in an interview earlier this year.
"I was warned by multiple people. Even people who knew I had auditioned and just read the script said, 'You'll never work again, I wouldn't touch it with a ten-foot pole: don't do it.' And I said, 'There's no way I can't not do it.'"
Out for six weeks now, Unplanned is approaching the end of its theatrical run. But what a run it's been: the film's box office take will cross the $18 million threshhold this weekend, which is three times what it cost to make. More impressive still, it has done that in the face of an unprecedented campaign of suppression that we discussed here and here.
In a word, it has been a smashing success and Bratcher carries the picture in her lead role, meaning she is likely to be in great demand going forward, certainly in the faith-based film sector, which continues to grow by leaps and bounds. In fact, she already has starring roles in two Christian films that are now in post-production - Princess Cut 2 and A Walk With Grace - and has also been cast in a historical, faith-based miniseries about George Washington - Washington's Armor - currently in production; in that one she plays Sarah Gist, wife of frontier scout Christopher Gist, who was a companion of Washington's and twice saved the future president's life when he was a young man.
With the kind of work she did in Unplanned and the talent she's been blessed with, it seems fairly certain Bratcher will have little trouble finding work in her chosen field going foward. Heck, even we here at Christian Film Blog have a script we're developing that we would love to cast her for! In the meantime, we look forward to covering all that she is currently doing.