The Life and Faith of an American Hero from Franklin, Tennessee
Contact: Franklin Springs Family Media, 615-599-0950, [email protected]
NASHVILLE, Feb. 20 /Christian Newswire/ -- "An American Adventure -- The Living Legacy of Jimmy Gentry," a new 48-minute documentary about the unique life and continuing legacy of 82 year old Jimmy Gentry, is available now from Franklin Springs Family Media.
"You can't spend much time in historic Franklin, TN before learning about the legendary Jimmy Gentry", said the film's co-producer, Mark Stubblefield. "His legacy – one that's built around his remarkable character – has a big reach".
The subject of Gentry's profound impact on his local community held great appeal for the film's producer/director, award-winning filmmaker Ken Carpenter. "I first met Jimmy Gentry while visiting his family's farm with my wife and children. We came to befriend Mr. Gentry in a way that I hope families do as they get to know him through this film. He's an extraordinary man in the sense that he embodies the simple treasures of life in a rare – and very appealing – way", said Carpenter.
Through high-definition videography and cinematic narrative, "An American Adventure -- The Living Legacy of Jimmy Gentry" traces the life of Gentry from his Depression-era boyhood in historic Franklin, TN, to his military service in WWII, to his life-altering experience as one of the first liberating soldiers through the gates at the infamous Dachau concentration camp, to his over 50 years as a renowned high school football coach.
An American Adventure examines the intersection of Gentry's faith, his family upbringing, the historical village of Franklin, TN, and the impact Gentry has had in both private and public sectors.
"Franklin, Tennessee is the epicenter of faith-based entertainment. We've had the privilege of telling stories for a lot of household names in the Christian entertainment industry, but somehow the heroic story of Jimmy Gentry provides a unique opportunity to explore what really matters in life," said Carpenter.
"I hope this story can be seen as a story that is similar to hundreds of stories found in towns across American during this time in history. I hope it helps those of the older generation to reminisce, and the younger generation to see what life was like then," said Gentry about the project.
Picturesque Gentry Farm plays a key role in the film. In Gentry's family for over 150 years, the 400 acre farm draws thousands of individuals and families to Franklin, TN each year for festivals, child camps, and community events that Gentry extends to the community.
Filming for the documentary took Gentry back to Dachau, Germany for the first time since World War II to visit the concentration camp that he helped to liberate 62 years ago. "It is so important to remember that this was his first time to go back since the war", said Stubblefield. "I can't imagine the swell of emotion that must have been going through his mind. But he understands that over twelve-hundred veterans pass away each day from the WWII generation, and that he has a responsibility to tell the stories to the next generation while there is still time."
The filmmakers believe that Gentry's inspirational story will appeal to a wide range of viewers. "My greatest hope for the film is that an examination of Jimmy Gentry's life will inspire audiences to aspire to that which is most honorable, most noble," said Carpenter, the film's director. "He's a heroic character in his unwavering commitment to that which is right, that which is true. He values the things that matter."
"The film teaches us to remember where we came from, and the great importance and joy of living a life of steadfast character," said co-producer Stubblefield. "We look forward to sharing it with the community of Franklin and around the nation".
Carpenter is an award-winning filmmaker who has worked in the mediums of film, television and music video. He recently produced and directed John Tesh: Alive, a new PBS television special, as well as 13 episodes of a new human-interest television show with Joni Eareckson Tada (airing Thursday nights on TBN at 7:30 EST). Carpenter garnered a 2007 Dove Award for the long form video, Amy Grant – Time Again. Since founding Franklin Films in 1994, Carpenter's faith-based clients have included projects for Michael W. Smith, Max Lucado, PAX TV, Steven Curtis Chapman, eHarmony, Jeremy Camp, Compassion International, Casting Crowns, The Gideons, dcTalk, and Big Idea Productions, among many others.
A trailer for "An American Adventure -- The Living Legacy of Jimmy Gentry" is viewable online at www.franklinsprings.com.