Saturday, December 18, 2010

The Real Story Behind "It's A Wonderful Life"

Every Christmas Eve our family watches the Jimmy Stewart movie "It's A Wonderful Life." And every Christmas Eve I embarrass my two teenage sons by crying when people gather in George Bailey's home to bail him out of trouble. It's a beautiful scene about the lives we touch when we live our own life the right way: compassionate about the plight of others, giving and not taking advantage of our brothers and sisters, loving one another, etc.

But "It's A Wonderful Life" was not a commercial success when released in 1946. In fact, many critics hated it. Still, the movie stirs something in the hearts of us all.

Below is an excerpt from the story of "It's A Wonderful Life" as told by Jimmy Stewart himself. You will clearly see the hand of God present in all aspects of the telling of this story. It's an amazing read.

Merry Christmas! I pray you're living a "wonderful life."

By Jimmy Stewart

"'Now, listen,' Frank (Capra) began hesitantly. He seemed a little embarrassed about what he was going to say. 'The story starts in heaven, and it's sort of the Lord telling somebody to go down to earth because there's a fellow who is in trouble, and this heavenly being goes to a small town, and...'

Frank swallowed and took a deep breath. 'Well, what it boils down to is, this fellow who thinks he's a failure in life jumps off a bridge. The Lord sends down an angel named Clarence, who hasn't earned his wings yet, and Clarence jumps into the water to save the guy. But the angel can't swim, so the guy has to save him, and then...'

Frank stopped and wiped his brow. 'This doesn't tell very well, does it?'

I jumped up. 'Frank, if you want to do a picture about a guy who jumps off a bridge and an angel named Clarence who hasn't won his wings yet coming down to save him, well, I'm your man!'"

To see the entire story by Jimmy Stewart, click on the blog post TITLE above.


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