COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) – A locally produced faith-based movie is set to be released Friday on over 200 screens nationwide. But the producers of “My Brother’s Keeper” are frustrated that the film is not scheduled to be shown at AMC theaters in Columbus. Today, we’re bringing you the story of how a local museum dedicated to the infantry soldier comes to the rescue of one of their own.
Three years ago this summer, Ty Manns and his film crew were busy shooting his movie “My Brother’s Keeper” in Columbus. Some of the scenes were shot along the Riverwalk and various other locations around town.
Manns says the movie is loosely based on his father’s life when he returned home from Vietnam in the 1970s. “I call it a story about a journey, and it was my father’s journey that we watched him go through, from coming home with PTSD, then nearly losing his family. He made a decision to walk through a church door to get counseling. That decision led him to becoming a deacon, a minister, and a pastor of his own churches. And it kept our family together for another 35 years before he passed away.”
“My Brother’s Keeper” was ready to be released in December of 2019, but COVID-19 put it on the shelf for over a year. Now it’s finally set to be released on Friday, March 19th. But there’s a new wrinkle. The company that is distributing the film does not have an agreement with AMC theaters, which means it won’t be shown in Columbus.
Manns says Manns Mackie Studios made a promise with the Film Commission, the city of Columbus, and Columbus State University that they would shoot movies in Columbus. “In part to prove out the concept that feature films could be shot here. And we hoped and prayed by doing that, other producers would want to bring their projects here.”
Manns adds that a lot of people in the community came out to help with the film, giving their time and resources. “Our fear is that if we can’t figure out a way to make this right, or to just get the movie…not just ours but any movie shot here…into a local theater that the community may start to turn away from helping film makers.”
But a local entity has stepped up to make this right, the National Infantry Museum. They have made arrangements to show “My Brother’s Keeper” on Sunday, March 28 at 3:00 in the afternoon.
Pete Jones, the retired brigadier general who is President of the National Infantry Museum, says, “We thought it was only right that if AMC was not going to be able to show it for numerous reasons, then the NIM, number one, was going to step up because it was a community effort, and two, that story needs to be told.”
Jones added, “I’m sure as time continues and we come out of this pandemic, we want to make sure that Columbus still becomes a center and a great incubator for the film industry. We’ve worked hard as a community to make that happen.”
Tickets are available through the National Infantry Museum online. No ID is required since the NIM is not on post.
The movie is being shown by Lucas Cinemas at Fort Benning. The first show time is Friday at 5:30 p.m. with another showing at 5:45. You will need proper ID to get on post, however.
On a side note, you may recognize a familiar face in the movie. News 3 East Alabama reporter Elizabeth White and her son make a cameo appearance in the film.
WRBL News 3 did reach out multiple times to AMC’s corporate office for their response to this situation but they never returned our calls.