In just a few weeks, “Palau: The Movie” will hit theatres, to share the story of the Argentine-born street preacher Luis Palau with the world.
The film follows the life of Luis Palau, who after losing his father at a young age, has to take his role at the head of his household. At around the same time, Palau also receives a call to ministry. Inspired by the Reverend Billy Graham, Palau decides that it is his job to share the Gospel with as many people as possible.
Argentine actor Gastón Pauls, who plays Luis Palau, was invited to play the evangelist after he personally called the actor. In an interview with Faithwire, Pauls recalled how he first heard of Palau, and the impact the film has had on his life.
A conversation with Gastón Pauls
Gastón Pauls stars in “Palau” alongside actors Scott Reeves (“Nashville”) and Daniel Roebuck (“Lost”).
Pauls told Faithwire that he first met Palau in 2003 when he went to film a documentary series called “Be Urban” at Palau’s festival in Palermo, Argentina.
“I didn’t meet Luis,” Pauls said, “but we made a program about the festival.”
Five years later Palau returned to Argentina and called Pauls, thanking him for his work on the “Be Urban” project.
“At the end of our conversation, he said he hoped God would one day give us the opportunity to work together,” Pauls recalled.
Nine years later, God brought the two back together, when Palau called Pauls to offer him the lead role in the film about his life.
“I was amazed that God brought us together after so many years and for such an important project,” Pauls said.
Before they began filming the movie, Pauls met with Palau twice, so that he could get to know him before taking on the task of playing his character.
“It was important that I meet with him before the film so I could get to know him and see his love for Jesus firsthand,” Pauls added. “I then took what I learned and did my best to put his persona in front of the camera.”
Pauls wasn’t always a Christian. He told Faithwire that he had his own coming to God moment, after struggling with drug abuse.
“I often say that I was in a really dark place and I couldn’t find the key — I couldn’t find the door to get out,” he explained.
“One night after three days of staying awake from using cocaine, I prayed for the first time ever in my life and asked God to help me,” he said. “He did.”
Pauls continued to share how he woke up the next day, and never touched a drug again.
“This happened 11 years ago,” he said.
Not only did he become clean of drugs, but he now gives speeches and presentations around South America to teenagers, sharing his story, and explaining the dangers of getting involved with drugs.
Pauls also added that working on “Palau: The Movie” showed him that every single thing we do as humans should bring glory to God.
“There is a scene where I say, ‘It’s not my glory, it’s for the glory of God.’ Through working on this movie, I realize now that our lives and everything we do is meant to bring glory to God,” he explained. “This was a very special scene for me.”
During filming, Pauls detailed how he lost his voice completely in the Bogota preaching scene. He explained how he prayed to God that He would be his voice because his own was gone.
“We didn’t know what to do,” he said. “I started praying, so did the extras and the crew. Twenty minutes later my voice came back stronger than ever. I asked in those moments for God to be my voice.”
“I learned the lesson for myself that we teach in the movie: It is about God dwelling in us, it is His power within us,” he said. “I understand now how Luis Palau has preached to millions, with the indwelling Christ.”
“I hope everyone who sees the movie will understand this for themselves,” he added.
Palau, who is now 83, dedicated his life to following Jesus’ call to share the Gospel with as many people as possible. He now lives in Portland, Oregon, where he still continues to tell every soul he encounters about Jesus Christ.
Back in January, Palau announced via YouTube video that he was fighting stage-4 lung cancer.
“I don’t feel panic or horror,” Palau said. “Many people are praying that the Lord would do a miracle. It would literally take a miracle, medically speaking … stage-4 is big time.”
Andrew Palau, one of Palau’s sons added how lucky they were to have agreed to make the movie before his father’s diagnosis, or else it might not have ever happened.
“We’re really lucky that he said yes to doing the movie before he got the cancer because one thing I’ve seen about him, as he approaches being closer with the Lord, is he doesn’t want people talking about himself,” Andrew said.
“Palau the Movie” was written and directed by Kevin Knoblock. The movie features Gastón Pauls (as Palau), Alexandra Bard (as Palau’s wife, Pat), Santiago Achaga (22-year-old Luis Palau), Agustin Amoedo (10-year-old Luis Palau), Fabian Carrasco (Palau’s father, Luis Sr.), Darren Dowler (Rev. Billy Graham) and more.
The movie will be released in both Latin America and the United States for two days only — April 4 and 6.