When people think of Hollywood actor Dennis Quaid, they think of his leading man roles in the films "The Parent Trap," "Flight of the Phoenix," and "Yours, Mine, Ours." However, there is no role Quaid considers as more life-changing than the one he took on for his new film, "I Can Only Imagine."
"I Can Only Imagine" is a feature film inspired by Mercy Me's hit song of the same name, and Quaid plays Arthur Millard, the real-life father of Mercy Me lead singer, Bart Millard. Director Andrew Erwin has decribed that it is a complex story about a father and his son, and the film will reveal how Arthur's death when Bart was only 18 years old impacted his life.
Quaid said the role really touched him, and he could identify with the Millards' faith in God because he himself is a Christian.
"I grew up in the Baptist church, went to Sunday school and then got baptized when I was nine," he said. "I read the Bible cover to cover."
As he grew up, he travelled the world and went on a journey to discover more about God. His conclusion? "For me, it's Jesus... there really is redemption in that," he said. "That was the inspiration."
After playing Arthur, Quaid became more inclined to think about the afterlife. He even completed a song he started writing for his mother 25 years ago called, "On My Way to Heaven."
"What do I imagine Heaven will be like? I think we all get a little taste of it here on Earth through prayer and meditation," he told The Christian Post of the song. "That's actually the good news that's given — you feel it here on Earth. To imagine it? I don't know — that takes other eyes."
"I Can Only Imagine" hits theaters on March 16.