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INDIVISIBLE

About The Production
The 100-plus-degree heat blisters a desert-like terrain as military Humvees roar past, and soldiers stand nearby awaiting instructions.

A forward operating base in some Middle Eastern war zone?

No, a movie set just outside Los Angeles on the final day of production for the uplifting new film INDIVISIBLE.

And as filming draws to a close on 32 days of shooting in Memphis, Tennessee, and at California's Blue Cloud Movie Ranch-a stand-in for Iraq in multiple feature films-it marks the latest milestone in a long journey for Director David Evans.

"It's incredible to look back now and see God's blessing on this project," Evans said. "From meeting the Turner family, to working with incredible writers and developing our script, to now just within a few hours of wrapping this amazing film. It's something we hope will change marriages. INDIVISIBLE is a story about how husbands and wives can fight every fight they face together, not apart, but together, and realize there's no challenge we face with our spouses that's too big for God."

INDIVISIBLE is a movie about marriage set in the military. It tells the true story of Capt. Darren Turner, an Army chaplain still on active duty. While honoring the men and women who wear the uniform, it also honors the resilient families who stand behind them. INDIVISIBLE tells a story of suffering, failure, faith and, ultimately, great hope.

"What makes this film so unique is that we're really investigating and coloring the story of what it is to be the families left behind when our men and women suit up and deploy," said Grey's Anatomy star Sarah Drew, who both stars in and serves as executive producer for INDIVISIBLE. "What these incredible men and women, who put themselves on the front lines to protect our freedom, are facing is enormous and requires so much courage."

And what the families deal with at home and then as their loved one tries to reintegrate in their lives afterward requires courage, too.

INDIVISIBLE tells the true story of the Turner family-Darren, Heather and their three children. During the Iraq War troop surge of 2007, the Army was facing a shortage of chaplains, and the divorce rate of enlisted soldiers had nearly doubled from that of 2000. And so, Darren is deployed almost as soon as he joins the Army, at the height of the surge, and is given the direct order to keep his soldiers in communication with their families back home and prepared for reuniting with them. But when he returns, he's unprepared himself. Anger and outbursts eventually lead a once-strong marriage to separation and the brink of failure.

But for this resilient family, faith wins out, and hope returns with it.

"I believe this film has the ability to bring healing to people's marriages, to people's family lives," Drew said. "It offers hope to people who are feeling like there is no hope. I think everyone who sees the film-men and women-is going to really be rooting for this family."

A SIX-YEAR JOURNEY

Before an army of volunteers and film industry professionals descended on Memphis to begin shooting, INDIVISIBLE faced a six-year journey from idea to wrapped production. It started with David Evans and his pastor.

Lynn Holmes is senior pastor of Calvary Church in the Memphis suburb of Cordova. For 15 years, Evans-a Memphis optometrist and Calvary member-had written and produced a new and modern Passion Play at Easter. But both Evans and Holmes were interested in the larger audience and larger impact a film offered. Calvary Pictures was formed and in 2010 brought its first feature film to the screen-THE GRACE CARD, which was released by AFFIRM Films and Provident Films and distributed by Samuel Goldwyn Films. A year later, they were ready for a new project and found the story of the Turner family.

"I originally set out to do a fictional story about an Army chaplain," explained David Evans, "I was researching chaplains online and came across Chaplain Turner's story and knew instantly I had to pursue it. I cold called him, and he agreed to meet in person. Soon after discussing the opportunity with his family, they gave me their blessing and eventually the military did, too-even though it took a little longer."

INDIVISIBLE is a much more ambitious project than the previous film with a larger cast and military action brought to vivid life on screen.

"This project is exponentially greater than anything we have ever done before, with more than 80 professionals involved all the time," Holmes said. "Our volunteers worked around the clock before, during and after every production day, providing 24-hour security for locations and film equipment, recruiting extras, setting up and striking craft services daily, and the list goes on. One thing that surprised me is the absolute love our volunteers have shown in performing their duties and the wonderful way the cast and crew on this set have experienced such camaraderie and unity. They all realize we're telling a story that needs to be told, and there seems to be a greater purpose involved than just making a movie."

Amazingly, Calvary Church has 500 members and more than 250 of them volunteered on the INDIVISIBLE set.

"In order to pull off a production on this level, it's not about how big your budget is," Evans said. "It's about how big the heart is of those who are working together hand in hand in difficult environments like we have here in California, where it gets to be 100-plus degrees. Every day I have a greater appreciation for what it takes to do a project like this."

AN OUTSTANDING CAST

In addition to Sarah Drew as Heather Turner, INDIVISIBLE features Justin Bruening, Jason George, Tia Mowry and Madeline Carroll.

Bruening plays Darren Turner, and he and Drew have been paired on screen before. He was her fiancé on Grey's Anatomy. And for him, the role in INDIVISIBLE had personal significance and connection.

"It's the same family dynamic in that I have a wife and three kids like my character," Bruening said. "I've been filming INDIVISIBLE for a month, so I've been away from my family. It's nothing compared to what Darren went through, but I can see now how hard it would be to be gone for a year and a half. It doesn't surprise me that families don't stay together when someone goes to war. Hopefully, that's what we're making this movie for, is to show them that there is hope, there is a way around all that pain and turmoil and loss to get back to where you started."

And Bruening wasn't the only actor feeling a connection with this story. Tia Mowry-who rose to fame with her twin Tamera in television's Sister, Sister-is a proud, self-described "Army brat," with both mom and dad serving a career as non-commissioned officers.

"What drew me to this project in particular was that it's a military movie and follows families who are in the Army. I grew up on Army bases, my backyard was full of soldiers," Mowry said. "What I love about this film, and where I find that it's unique, is you see that there's hope at the end of the tunnel. That forgiveness is beautiful, amazing, and it can be accomplished. I want people who see this film to see that when there's love, when there's forgiveness, when there's prayer, when there's family, when there's some sort of sense of community, there's hope."

Jason George shares both a Grey's Anatomy and military connection to the film. He's been featured on the hit TV show since 2010, and that's where Drew told him about INDIVISIBLE.

"We were sitting in hair and makeup at Grey's, and she tells me about this project she's doing," George said. "I don't think she knew at the time but I'm a military brat. My dad was Navy, so I just loved the idea of her doing a film that was a love letter to the troops. A few weeks later she gave me a call and was like, 'Remember that film that we were talking about?'"

A TRUE STORY THAT NEEDED TO BE TOLD

Time after time, conversations with the cast and crew of INDIVISIBLE turn to the vital need to tell the story of the Turners' real hardship, pain and resilience and how faith brought redemption and hope to their lives.

"I love true stories, and I love redemption stories, especially redemption stories involving marriage," Drew said. "I have my own redemption story, in my own experience, my own marriage, and I have always wanted to tell a story like that."

The Turner family story had been told in newspapers, in fact that's where David Evans first heard of it. But Darren Turner is glad for the wider exposure the film will bring.

"It's encouraging to us that our story matters to people, that it wasn't in vain, that there was purpose, even in our heartbreak, there was purpose," he said. "We didn't see it at the time, this was seven, eight years ago, and just now we're starting to see that flowers are coming out of the burnt areas."

INDIVISIBLE tells a gripping story of the dangers soldiers face in combat, but George believes it reaches well beyond an action audience.

"If you like action in your movies, we've got action for you. If you like loving families in your movies, we've got loving families," he said. "If you're a person of faith, we've got your faith. If you have any kind of respect for the military at all, we've got that. If you happen to love this country, we've got that for you. There's something in here for everybody."

Eric Close, who plays Turner's commanding officer in the film, is best known for the long-running series Without a Trace, and he believes audiences will relate the characters' experiences to their own, regardless of a military connection.

"What I liked about the Turner family's journey in this film was that you can take their story and you can put it into any area of life," he said. "It doesn't have to be just in the military. Couples face challenges, and they go through ups and downs."

Skye P. Marshall, who plays a chaplain's assistant charged with guarding Turner in Iraq, has a special perspective on the film. She's a military veteran herself.

"INDIVISIBLE represents more than just another military movie," she said. "I want people who are deployed to see this film and be motivated to go home to their families and hug them and love them. And I want civilians to not just say, 'Thank you for your service,' but to also know what that service is."

Throughout the 32 days on location, Evans saw a special attitude in his cast as they become so passionate about the Turners' story. There were stunt professionals on set, but the actors were so committed, they wanted to do their own stunts. Evans believes respect for the impact INDIVISIBLE can have brought a sense of mission to the cast and crew.

"I think every member of the cast in this movie realized they're part of an incredible story being told," he said. "We know that people will walk in the theater whose marriages are suffering, people who are living some of the same circumstances the various characters are living on screen. And everyone felt a responsibility to present the various characters in a way that not only honors our troops, but also speaks to the lives of those who need to be challenged."

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