Aaron Allen is a Christian filmmaker based out of Ohio. His company, Extreme Christian Entertainment, specializes in films about real life, addressing topics that might be considered controversial and extreme. Their docu-drama Foster Home is available at Christian Cinema.
When did you first develop an interest in filmmaking?
I have always been interested in filmmaking. I loved movies, and sometimes friends or cousins would use a video camera and make a short unscripted improv movie. The interest grew after years of wanting to be a police officer until in my sophomore year of high school, I decided I was more into acting and making movies.
What is your filmmaking background?
My junior year of high school, I got the chance to audition in a PSA on school violence. I didn’t get a part but was asked if I wanted to be an extra. I was also put into some crew positions for it. I became good friends with the producer and a couple of years later I worked on another film with them. It was here I realized God was calling me to make movies. I just felt right on a film set. I felt I was home, like I belonged. My heart felt bigger than my body. I later also worked on a horror film as a crew member and extra, not too proud of it anymore, but it was an experience on the ole resume.
Tell us about Extreme Christian Entertainment.
My movie production company’s name was a gift from God. I prayed about what I should call it and felt Him tell me, ‘Look at what all your movies have in common.” So, I thought it over…. every issue we cover is either considered controversial or extreme or even extremely controversial. Now, some may look at the name Extreme Christian Entertainment, and combine Extreme+Christian and think… extremist. When that thought comes to mind what words does one think of? Violence, fanatical, to forcefully push beliefs onto others, etc. NOT WHAT WE ARE ABOUT.
There is no violence or force. We can’t make the decision for a person to believe something. That is one’s own personal decision and right. No one can or should try to take that away from another human being. As Christians we share our faith and what God has done for us. After that it is a personal decision for the listener – or viewer. We don’t use violence or force. We use love, friendliness, respect and care. So let me explain Extreme Christian Entertainment a little better, by breaking it up.
The issues we cover are extreme and controversial. We tackle topics like crime, teen sex/teen pregnancy, abortion, adoption, marriage, divorce, drugs, etc. These are a few issues that are considered extreme and controversial – there are many others.
By faith and belief we have asked Jesus to come into our lives to help us be like Him. Problem is, we are not like Him. We are sinners like everyone else. A Christian is a forgiven sinner. We may slip or fall back into sin but return to God and His forgiveness and acceptance as we fight to keep away from sin. This is a personal and hard decision and task.
Our movies will share what it means to be a Christian and what it is truly about. We share our faith with love, friendliness, respect and caring. We can’t force our beliefs on anyone, and we are not supposed to. God gave each of us FREE WILL – the ability to make our own decisions. We all have that right to make our own decision. A Christian shares their faith, by sharing what the Bible says – not only their own theories or opinions though it may match. Consider this, when you’re a child, your parents make rules for you to follow. If you break those rules, there are consequences for them, a punishment. God is like a parent. Abba, Jesus called him. Abba means father. The Bible has rules God made for us as His children. Our decisions either are to follow them or break them. Now, we are not perfect. Whether we are Christians or not, we all make decisions and it either follows or breaks the rules. Our parents had their ways of punishments: spankings, put in corners/time outs, grounded off our favorite toys or not allowed to go outside. Right? God has his own form of punishment some would consider to be extreme. For those who choose not to follow Him, it is a final, hard, tough-love, eternal punishment, forever separated from Him, God. This means no heaven and sadly the alternative is not good at all. But our decision will lead us either way. It is not God’s decision. He tries to show us the way like any parent. It is our final decision on what we do and where we end up.
Our movies, may share Christ through real life issues that happen around us 24/7. Our movies may share our faith in Jesus and what it means to be a Christian. In the end, it is how the audience decides to move forward. If someone is a Christian it could strengthen their faith and belief in God. If not a Christian, it could give one things to think about. The characters in our movies are the types that we can relate to physically or metaphorically. The emotions, actions and situations can feel close to home. They may be for entertainment, but the audience will definitely take something away from the stories; things to consider and think about toward making their own decisions. Still, this is entertainment, but entertainment that can change lives. How can it change your life? That is the viewers decision. Remember, we are encouraged to make wise decisions. Again, that is up to the individual alone to do for ourselves and for you to do for yourself.
What films have you produced?
We did a short film called Foster Home, in 2013/2014 and it was released on Christiancinema.com Video on Demand for online digital download to rent for $1.99 and own for $7.99. It’ s a film about four former foster kids in college doing a documentary with a film class telling about their experiences, (a movie filmed within a movie). The lighting may be weird a bit, and some audio was discovered later to be somewhat off. It still has been dubbed an ok project. We have other short films coming up that we hope to show off to as a line of work and begin raising funds for feature films.
What has been the response to your films?
I have had positive and negative feedback on them, but mostly good. Mixed reviews I guess you could say. The things we cover in our films are real issues going on in the world like stuff you could see or read in the news. I like to say, it’s not your traditional Christian films. People like that we are and will be covering some very serious hard topics. We make them a little more exciting I guess.
What is your mission as a filmmaker?
Extreme Christian Entertainment, produces Christian faith-based movies that share the Christian faith the way it needs to be shared. We cover real life issues in our world, issues that are considered extreme and controversial. We do so, without judging others based on beliefs, life styles, and decisions, but with love, caring, friendliness and respect. By covering various viewpoints of these issues, we let people make their own decisions regarding answers. Through these movies, people can consider and contemplate faith-based solutions to the problems of the modern-day world.
My mission basically is to share Christ in a different way, a way that people don’t feel judged or hated because of the way they live their lives or the decisions they made. To do this, we may want to reach the lost but we want to show how its a personal decision. We will also show how Christian should be to people of different viewpoints and how to respond properly if sharing Jesus with them or how to treat them respectfully so they don’t feel judged or hated.
What are you currently working on?
We are building our line of work through short films much like Foster Home. We are getting ready for production on Forgiveness, a short film about two old friends having a falling out in high school running into each other later in college, but the past still divides them due to the arguments and mean things said. Divine intervention brings them together awkwardly.
We hope we can use these short films to lead us to producing our feature films. We pray that funding would come in for these films to be produced on a higher scale and get out to be seen more. We are building relationships with possible people who will help make this happen. If there is any questions from anyone, please feel free to contact me through our website, look us up on Facebook, Twitter and more as we are building up our social network presence. Thank you very much and God Bless you all. Maybe, I’ll see you in the movies.