Dennis Quaid is one of the rarest of Hollywood celebrities. Folks truly view him as the grinning guy next door who just happens to be a big-time movie star.
Standing apart from many Left Coast dreamers and achievers, there seems to be an additional attribute that Quaid possesses. He is one of the charmed ones in life who is blessed with an immensely successful acting career but is also gifted with the wherewithal to be able to sustain it.
His launch to stardom began in the 1980s with a string of hit movies that include “Breaking Away,” “The Right Stuff,” “The Big Easy,” “Innerspace,” and “Great Balls of Fire!”
Along the fame path, though, he remained committed to being part of family friendly entertainment, as evidenced in the films “The Parent Trap” and “Footloose.”
More recently, Quaid has chosen to be a vital part of Hollywood’s subcategory of movies, faith-based films, taking on major roles in movies such as “Soul Surfer” and “I Can Only Imagine.” In the process, via his participation in uplifting projects, he has established quite a track record within the faith film genre as a verifiably bankable star.
“Surfer” reportedly cost about $18 million to produce and earned more than $47 million in global box-office revenue. And “Imagine,” with a budget of a mere $7 million, has taken in more than $86 million since its release. Both films got the head-turning attention of movie executives, due to their remarkably sizable profit margins.
Quaid is also working on some yet-to-be-released faith-based projects, which includes “On a Wing and a Prayer,” a film based on a true story in which a Dad (played by Quaid) attempts to save his family from an impending plane crash.
One of the producers of the movie is Roma Downey, whose credits, along with her husband Mark Burnett, also include the highly successful television series “The Bible.”
“Imagine”’s directors Jon and Andrew Erwin tapped Quaid to star in another upcoming film project, “American Underdog: The Kurt Warner Story.”
Regarded as one of the greatest stories in NFL history, Warner went from being an undrafted free agent to playing professional football for 12 seasons and in the process became a two-time Most Valuable Player and a Super Bowl MVP.
In observing Quaid’s career, I see a kind of enfolding of his faith within his work. He was raised a Baptist Christian. In addition to the art of acting, he is also a music artist and has written a Christian song for his mother, titled “On My Way to Heaven,” which was included in the “Imagine” film.
Quaid discussed his involvement in Christian artistic expression in a promotion video for the film and his song.
“It’s a connection to my faith roots in the sense that I grew up in the Baptist church, went to Sunday School, and got baptized when I was nine. I always loved the music from the church,” Quaid shared.
In “Imagine,” he portrays Arthur Millard, the difficult and sometimes abusive father of Bart Millard, the lead singer for the Contemporary Christian Music group Mercy Me.
In an interview at the National Religious Broadcaster’s Convention in 2018, Quaid spoke about how playing Millard’s father led to trusting in the Almighty.
“After Arthur, I started having the thought of not judging anyone else and that included myself. Because you just let God take that over; let him take care of that all. It frees you up in life,” Quaid explained.
The actor talked about a long quest that he had undertaken to find an answer to an important question.
“I went around the world in my late 20s and the question I had was ‘Who is God?’ I became a seeker. I read the Bible cover to cover and for me, the answer is Jesus,” Quaid said.
He is presently the co-star of a yet another more recent redemptive project, the newly released Netflix film “Blue Miracle.”
The script is based upon the true story of a Christian orphanage in Mexico, which suffers from severe financial troubles. Quaid’s character Wade Malloy, a past two-time tournament champion fisherman but now a gruff individual long past his glory days, reluctantly teams up with a guardian and his kids for a chance to win a lucrative fishing competition.
Malloy’s coaching helps him grow beyond his past while simultaneously creating a bond with his fishing team of underprivileged children.
“Blue Miracle” follows a framework seen in many children’s sports movies, except that the sports related activity is not the usual hockey, baseball, or martial arts. Instead it spotlights the universally beloved sport of fishing.
The movie is ably executed and features the type of highly creative variants that allows it to end up being both satisfactorily entertaining and warmly endearing.
In a recent discussion of the film, Quaid spoke about his faith and how the virtue of humility unlocks “God’s miracles.”
“God hears me every time, I pray to God and He will help you listen,” Quaid told Movie Guide.
The actor’s character in “Blue Miracle” discovers that humility is a prerequisite to fulfilling the team’s destiny.
Quaid was fortunate to experience the same virtue outside of his movie life.
“By being humbled, that’s when God’s miracles are allowed to work. Once we get out of the way”
May we all be so blessed.