The New York Times bestseller Same Kind of Different As Me chronicles the unlikely friendship between author Ron Hall and a homeless man named Denver Moore. The inspirational book was adapted for a Pure Flix movie release starring Greg Kinnear, opening in theaters October 20. To coincide with the film’s release, W Publishing Group (Harper Collins) will publish a special movie edition including a 16-page color photo insert and story update.
Author Ron Hall took time to answer a few questions for Hollywood Jesus readers about his book, the movie experience, and the impact his story can have on current race relations.
What new content will readers find in Same Kind of Different as Me Movie Edition? Why was it important to include it?
The movie edition of Same Kind of Different as Me (SKODAM) will include four new chapters along with photos I took on the set of actors, family, and crew. It was important to include these chapters as it’s been eleven years since SKODAM was first published and many things critical to our story have occurred. Constantly, I’m asked about Denver and I write about the ten years Denver and I lived together and sadly tell the story of his illness and death. Also, the story of how the movie got made is worthy of a Hollywood film in itself. I also write about our vision and how I hope this film will impact our nation and give the viewers new eyes to see the homeless through the lenses of God.
What were your first thoughts when producers approached you about adapting the original book into a movie?
I’d be lying if I said I was anything but flattered and excited when first approached ten years ago about turning our book into a film. But in the famous words of my late friend Denver, “If the devil ain’t a messin’ with you, he’s already got you!” And believe me, the devil messed with us every step of the way. It’s a God story that will encourage our nation. It needs to be told and the devil has tried and tried to shut it down because it shows the love of Christ.
Our country is in the midst of tense racial conflict. What can Same Kind of Different as Me add to the conversation and help move our country toward healing?
SKODAM illustrates beautifully that it’s not the color of our skin that divides us; it’s the condition of our hearts. When we get our hearts right, our nation will come together and hopefully, those who see our film will all be struck with colorblindness.
What have you been up to since the release of the original book?
Since SKODAM was released in June 2006, Denver and I traveled all across America carrying Miss Debbie’s torch for the homeless helping raise millions for those who have lost all hope and hopefully making a difference. Also, I just finished writing a new book Workin Our Way Home about the ten years that Denver and I lived together. I chronicle the day-by-day adventures and misadventures, both hilarious, and tragic. Expect it in bookstores at year end. Thomas Nelson is publishing.
How can readers join your efforts to meet the needs of the homeless community?
For the ordinary, everyday sort of person who wants to help the homeless and doesn’t know where to start, I encourage them to visit our website SKODAM.org. Also, I believe anyone who sees our film will most likely be moved to action and, at that point, I encourage them to present themselves at a local organization or rescue mission who cares for and transforms those who need hope and want to change. Go prepared to serve and come away being the one who was blessed.
Photo credit: TKO Marketing and PARAMOUNT PICTURES.