Actor Jesse Hutch is one of the more popular male leads in the family-friendly romantic comedy genre, yet he says his career would have looked much different today if he had been open to more edgy Hollywood content that included nudity.
Hutch, though, says he has no regrets.
“God put conviction on my heart,” he told Christian Headlines.
Hutch stars in the new Great American Pure Flix movie A Christmas Blessing and has had major roles in B&B Merry; Love, Bubbles & Crystal Cove; Snowmance, and Love's Last Resort. He also has starred in rom-coms on the Hallmark Channel.
“There are no surprises” in family-friendly rom-coms, he said. “... My kids can just walk in on [these movies] at any time. And we're not going to have this crazy deep conversation about something that we're not ready for yet.”
Hutch’s Christian faith is the driving force behind his selection of roles, he said. He has had some memorable auditions.
“I was once asked in an audition if I would make-out with a horse. And I said, ‘Like a real horse?’ And they're like, ‘Yeah, like a real one.’ ... I just was like, ‘No, I'm good. We're done.”
Hutch walked out of that audition. Yet other times, he has lost roles because of his stance.
“Even in romantic comedies, there's a kiss. And I have to have that conversation with my wife, with my kids. Obviously, my wife and I have grown together, and we have an understanding of what this is how we do that, and where our comfort levels are. But my kids, they're getting older, they're like, ‘Dad, you are kissing another girl -- what's going on?’ And we've had these conversations.’ So even on that level, you still have to have honest conversations with your loved ones about that.
“[But] there's some projects, of course, that just really push that envelope. And it's like, wow, this is filled with way more passion, it's filled with -- maybe even nudity is what they want. And I'm not interested in any of that. There's been a couple of times where I thought, ‘Would my career have gone a different direction?’ Absolutely. Do I regret it? No.”
One time, Hutch said, he had been given a role as a secondary character in a major Hollywood series when the filmmakers approached him about instead taking a major role that would have required a bedroom scene with the female lead. Hutch declined the major role and subsequently lost the secondary role, too.
“Because I didn't take that [major] role, the next day, they rescinded [the secondary] role,” Hutch told Christian Headlines. “People can get offended sometimes if you stand your ground, and that's okay. I can't live in that. I have to live in the fact that, hey, God put conviction on my heart. I gotta follow that.”
In the new Great American Pure Flix movie A Christmas Blessing, Hutch portrays a character named Otto. The film also stars Lori Laughlin.
Otto, though, is not the male lead, “which I think is phenomenal,” he said.
“I'm very excited to hear and see what people think,” he said. “Because this is not the typical character that I played in the past. … Every time you meet Otto, you're going to either smile or chuckle. … I came up with kind of a character that I think will touch people even when he's not saying anything.”
Photo Courtesy: Great American Pure Flix. Used with permission.
Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, the Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.
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