ChristianHeadlines Is Moving to CrosswalkHeadlines! Visit Us Here

Actor Jimmy Stewart’s Extraordinary Life to Be Re-Told in New Family Movie

Michael Foust | CrosswalkHeadlines Contributor | Updated: Mar 21, 2024
Actor Jimmy Stewart’s Extraordinary Life to Be Re-Told in New Family Movie

Actor Jimmy Stewart’s Extraordinary Life to Be Re-Told in New Family Movie

One of the top filmmakers in the faith-based, inspirational genre has won the rights to make a family movie about legendary actor and Oscar-winner Jimmy Stewart.

Stewart famously starred in the 1946 classic movie It’s A Wonderful Life but -- before that -- fought in World War II, where he flew bombers over Germany. His one Oscar was not for that famous film but for another hit, The Philadelphia Story (1940).   

Burns and Co. Productions has acquired the exclusive rights to the film. Aaron Burn, a director/producer for the company, is guiding the effort to turn the story into a movie. Burns directed Birthright Outlaw and Legacy Peak and produced War Room and Overcomer, among others. 

Burns and Co. is developing the script with Stewart’s daughter, Kelly Stewart-Harcourt, an executive producer. The famous actor died in 1997.

“This is a story that I fell in love with years ago,” Burns told Christians Headlines. “Of course, we all know him as the actor from It's A Wonderful Life and other classics like Mr. Smith Goes to Washington. And I remember watching those movies over and over again with my family as a kid. [But] I had no idea that he was a World War II veteran and was actually a squadron commander flying precision bombing runs over Germany.” 

The “despair and the passions” from Stewart’s service in World War II were poured into the character of George Bailey in It’s a Wonderful Life, Burns said. 

“The themes that surfaced in that film were really a reflection of Jimmy's life, where he'd been, and where he went,” Burns said.

Burns said that Stewart’s father often prayed for him during the war.

“The making of that film was transformative for him to bring him personal healing and spiritual healing, and then launch him into the rest of his acting career, but also transformed him into the father and husband that he became,” he said. “And it is so fun to get to connect with Kelly, one of his twin daughters, and talk to her about her dad's legacy.”

It’s a Wonderful Life helped heal the nation after World War II, Burns said. The film is tentatively titled A Truly Wonderful Life and will include themes of citizenship, community, family, and prayer, he said. 

“We're working on the script, all the production logistics, meeting with studios and partners, and just having a ton of fun diving into the history,” he said.

Photo Courtesy:  Liberty Films


Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist PressChristianity TodayThe Christian Post, the Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.



Actor Jimmy Stewart’s Extraordinary Life to Be Re-Told in New Family Movie