GREENWOOD VILLAGE — Let there be lights ... camera ... action.
It dawned on Sun Hui East that Christian-themed feature films could have more impact on spirituality than sermons.
For one thing, it seems easier to get people into movie theaters than into church.
East launched Strong Foundation Films in 2011, she said, to bring the eternal Gospels to people in the medium of our times — as long, visual parables.
The Korean-born minister is also pastor of First Love Harvest Church, a 200-member church in Centennial. She is also the author of 27 books and nine screenplays, a minister to homeless around Aurora and a globe-trotting, faith-healing missionary — recently holding a revival in Mexico.
She's not a workaholic, she said, but a "prayer-a-holic."
She had prophetic dreams — even as a young girl, she said — in which God told her she was meant to save many souls. Her film career is her latest sowing in the fields of the Lord.
Asked whether she was more pastor or producer, she said, "I'm a pastor that God has given a burden to produce movies with messages to reach out to the lost. So I guess you could say I'm both."
She already has two films out, "The Prophet's Son" and "In Over My Head." The small-budget films were shown briefly at Harkins Theatres in Denver this fall. Fifty pastors attended opening night of "The Prophet's Son" on Sept. 28, she said. A third movie, "Victoria," is in the works — shot partly in Mexico and partly in a big home in Greenwood Village.
East's 23-year-old son, Josiah Warren, has starred in three and directed two of the films she has written and produced. Other family and church members also have contributed in various production roles.
Her daughter, Christen Flores, and son-in-law David Flores work on her films — they have credits for photography and editing. Their daughter Chloe had a supporting actress role in "In Over My Head," a romantic comedy. Her producer grandmother called her a natural.
East hired more outside help for her first film, she said, but then "we watched what they did, and that's how we learned."
Christen said she wasn't surprised when her mother became a filmmaker.
"If she says she's going to do something, somehow it always ends up happening," Christen said. "I just keep my mouth shut and watch it happen."
East doesn't provide a lot of specifics on financing, except that many of the people working on films have agreed to defer payment for services until the films make any money.
"What we've needed has shown up when we needed it," East said. "God has responded."
Strong Foundation films will be distributed independently through theater rentals, DVDs, online downloads and Christian TV, said East's publicist, Desera Price, who also does wardrobe for the films.
Electa Draper: 303-954-1276, email@example.com or twitter.com/electadraper