The Day of the Phone Call - Pt 1

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These blogs are created to give a behind- the-scenes look at the inspiration behind the upcoming movie The Favorite. This film hitting theaters in September is based on incredible true events behind The Favorite Movie.
Luke Bernard’s life threatening accident gave him this vision that led him to write the screenplay for The Favorite just months after he was learning how to write all over again due to his traumatic brain injury.

The Favorite Hits Theaters This September:: https://www.thefavoritemovie.com

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Everyone has a story.

I don’t remember anything about my accident. I don’t have memories of being in the hospital or the rehab center, either.  But, my family does. When I got home, I did as much research as I could to piece together the details. I asked questions to try to put together what happened. So, I listened intently to everyone’s story of how they found out about my accident.

My brother Peter was a student at the University of Central Florida at the time. He found out during a theater performance and broke down, bawling, in front of the cast. We were typical brothers and often argued.

Behind-the-scenes photo (L-R: Hudson Harris, John Schneider, Andrew Koch)

It was very possible the last words between us had been a fight.

I love my brother dearly and I completely understood the pain he must have felt finding out. It’s the same pain I’d have felt if the situation had been reversed.

In the screenplay for The Favorite, people often ask if the two brothers are about me and Peter. The answer is, not really. Obviously, I have a brother and I know what it’s like to love my brother and be at odds with a brother all at the same time.

But in real-life, my brother, Peter, was there for me, encouraging me on with the rest of my family after the accident.

In the film, the character I wrote and played, Benjamin, is how I felt after my accident. He is a brother trying to find himself and his place in his family. Benjamin (my middle name) is a reflection of me, but the character is a typical brother dealing with the pain of brokenness. For a brother, that pain can be intensified when we finally try to see ourselves honestly through God’s eyes.

God shows us how much he values brothers—and all people—being reconciled with each other: “Therefore if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar.  First go and reconcile to them; then come and offer your gift.” (Matt 5:23-24)

God cares so much that we have peace in our families that He tells us we shouldn’t offer him a gift in worship until we have been reconciled. Now, I can understand why.

After all, our days aren’t guaranteed.

From The Favorite, two brothers reconcile: Benjamin (Luke Bernard) and Luke (Matt Fahey)

In the meantime, we can be kinder to each other. We can take the time and effort to try to repair what’s broken—even if we didn’t mean to break it. I was broken. Hearing my brother’s story was healing even as God was healing me.

Ultimately, we have to ask ourselves: have we done everything we can to love one another, and have we loved our brother, as God loves us?

The Favorite, a family film based on true events, opens in theaters nationwide in September, 2019.

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INSPIRATION
March 9, 2013 Luke Bernard was in a near fatal car accident. He entered L.A. County Hospital with barely a pulse. He had a GCS of 3 with dilated and fixed pupils, and had a zero chance of survival. The neurosurgeon performed emergency surgery. A 4 x 5 inch piece of his skull was needed to be removed allowing the damaged brain to swell. Doctors removed two blood clots on his brain. He had two broken vertebrae in his neck and back, as well as facial and rib fractures. Thousands were mobilized to pray for complete recovery. Luke had a miraculous recovery, returning home to Florida after six weeks in the hospital.
DREAM BECOMES MOVIE
Two months after returning home, Luke had a cranioplasty to replace his skull. Those with brain trauma typically have insomnia. Luke was no exception. However, one evening he had a deep sleep and God gave him a dream. The next morning, he was excited that he had slept and told his parents about the dream. His parents encouraged him to write the dream down, believing it would be good for his rehab. One month and 90 pages later, Luke had written the first draft of The Favorite. Six months prior to this, Luke was relearning to write his name.
ABOUT THE FIM
The Favorite is about two brothers. One brother, Luke, is a star college soccer player verging on a pro career. The other brother, Benjamin perceives his brother is the favorite. Soccer is his father’s favorite sport. Ben pursues MMA fighting in hopes to win his father’s favor.

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