Reunion Records’ artist, NewSong, and VanLiere-Wilcox Management recently announced that the CBS Television Network will air “The Christmas Shoes” movie as a holiday special Movie of the Week this upcoming holiday season.
Starring Rob Lowe (“The West Wing”) and Kimberly Williams (“Father of the Bride”), “The Christmas Shoes” movie will be based on Donna VanLiere’s New York Times best-selling novella of the same title, which was published by St. Martin’s Press in October 2001. The novella was inspired by NewSong’s mainstream adult contemporary radio single, “The Christmas Shoes,” which hit No. 1 in January 2001 after just three weeks on the chart.
Scheduled to air this coming holiday season, “The Christmas Shoes” will feature the NewSong hit and cameo appearances by members of the group. The movie is being produced by Craig Anderson and Beth Grossbard Productions. Filming is currently underway in Nova Scotia.
“I first heard about The Christmas Shoes about a year ago, prior to its publication,” said executive producer Beth Grossbard. “I was immediately captivated by this touching story and knew it had the potential to become a Christmas classic. Craig (Anderson) and I are thrilled to be bringing Donna VanLiere’s beautiful story to the screen and delighted we’ve been able to attract such a wonderful cast.”
St. Martin’s Press and Reunion Records are both planning aggressive re-launches this fall of The Christmas Shoes book and album respectively. “This is a great opportunity for Reunion and St. Martin’s Press to capitalize on the millions of people who will be exposed to this song for the very first time through the promotion and airing of this movie. It is our hope that this song will move beyond being a radio hit and become a Christmas favorite for years to come,” says Dean Diehl, Sr. VP/general manager of Reunion Records.
The novella The Christmas Shoes tells the story of a young boy, Nathan Andrews, who changes the life of one man. Eight-year-old Nathan’s mother is dying, and inspired by a story told by his teacher, Nathan is determined to give his mother a pair of Christmas shoes. The story’s narrator, Robert, is a hard-nosed, high-powered attorney. So engrossed in his career, he is blinded by the effect his work has on his family and marriage. With his marriage on the brink of falling apart, Robert encounters Nathan on Christmas Eve and the experience alters his life forever.
Traveling the globe since May 1981, NewSong signed with Reunion Records in 2001, and is currently in the studio working on a new project, slated to release in early 2003. Over its span of recording and touring, NewSong has released 12 albums and scored 17 No. 1 songs, including 1997’s record-setting “Miracles,” which stayed at the top of The CCM Update’s AC chart for five weeks. The song was named American Songwriter magazine’s 1997 Christian Song of the Year. That same year, NewSong was voted Group of the Year by industry trade journal Christian Research Report. The group has garnered seven Gospel Music Association Dove Award nominations during its tenure.
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