Actor Kelsey Grammer is probably best known to audiences as Frasier Crane, the character he portrayed on the television series “Frasier” and “Cheers” for 20 years. But in a recent interview, he has spoken openly about his deep Christian faith and “the difference Jesus made in his life.”
Known for many years as one of the few conservatives working in Hollywood, Grammer, 68, told USA Today that he won’t apologize for his faith.
“I’ve had hiccups. I’ve had some tragic times. I have wrestled with those and worked my way through them: sometimes rejecting faith, sometimes rejecting God even, in a period of being pretty angry about it, like, ‘Where were you?’ That kind of thing,” he explained. “But I have come to terms with it and have found great peace in my faith and in Jesus. It’s not cavalier – Jesus made a difference in my life. That’s not anything I’ll apologize for.”
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Grammer was raised in the cult known as “Christian Science” but he was moved by the “Jesus movement” of the 1960s and ’70s, he told USA Today.
“They were energized and optimistic, and I thought that was a great thing to see,” he said.
The historic Jesus Movement began on the West Coast and spread. The Christian revival saw young people, often called hippies, turning to Christ.
The revival that unfolded in Southern California in the late 1960s and early 1970s is what Time Magazine called “The Jesus Revolution.” But just four years earlier, the front page of the very same magazine was asking, “Is God Dead?”
Even though Grammer has won numerous awards over the years for his TV work, he said his best work just maybe his portrayal of Pastor Chuck Smith in the new motion picture Jesus Revolution.
“It’s really uplifting. It’s a good movie,” the actor told USA Today.
As CBN News reported last month, Grammer became emotional while talking about his portrayal of Pastor Smith during an appearance promoting the movie on the syndicated program “Live with Kelly and Ryan.”
The heartwarming moment came after the show aired a clip from the film. “I love this movie,” Grammer said through tears. “I really love it.”
The actor told hosts Kelly Ripa and Ryan Seacrest that his wife Kayte Walsh, loved it too when they both sat down in their home to watch the first cut of the film.
“When Kayte saw it she said, ‘Oh my God, it’s the best thing you’ve ever done,'” he recalled. “She started crying.”
Becoming emotional, Grammer told Ripa and Seacrest that his character “is a man looking for his own faith and finds it as well. A man whose church is empty. He can’t get traction and he’s started to think he’s going to be fired from his job as a pastor.”
“This hippie comes into his life,” he continued. “And he finds new purpose and started a movement that’s still going. It’s extraordinary.”
Grammer then told Ripa and Seacrest that he has been approached by a number of people, who said, “You’re playing Chuck Smith! Oh, I listened to him all the time.’ Or they’d say, ‘He married us’ or ‘I was baptized by Chuck Smith.'”
“You can see this light in their eyes,” he said before breaking into tears again.
Grammer will next star in a revival of “Frasier” for the streaming platform Paramount+. Although no streaming date has been announced, some industry insiders believe it will be released later this year.
“Jesus Revolution” is a Kingdom Story film in collaboration with Lionsgate. Filmmaker Jon Erwin of “I Can Only Imagine” and “American Underdog” directed the film.
Other members of the movie’s cast include “The Chosen” star Jonathan Roumie, Joel Courtney, Anna Grace Barlow, and Kimberly Williams-Paisley.
The story of Pastor Greg Laurie is also included in the film. Laurie was a teenager at the time of the Jesus People Movement of the 1970s, but he went on to found Harvest Christian Fellowship, in Riverside, California, one of the largest churches in America.
Laurie, 70, and his wife Cathe spoke to CBN News’ Studio 5 as they walked the red carpet at the Los Angeles premiere of “Jesus Revolution.”
“People know me as an older guy, and it is interesting for them to be introduced to us when we were young,” Laurie said. “It’s our story, but it’s like I am watching another story. But it is a story of redemption. And we are sort of representing a generation of young people that were searching.”
Cathe Laurie added, “I was aware of how powerful it was for me. It was life-changing. It was overnight. It was darkness to light. And I’ve seen it played out in others’ lives as they’ve had encounters with Christ. But I never thought our story, especially my story, would be told in such a beautiful way.”
Roumie told Studio 5, “I think as humans we are hardwired for a couple of things. One of those is community, only second to God. Relationship with God and community with each other. And when those two things seem to be compromised in society, the spirit starts to rebel against that and try to figure out how to put that back in its right order. And so you have these revivals.”
“And I think you see it now with what’s going on in Kentucky,” he said.
Watch the “Jesus Revolution” trailer below:
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