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A film adaptation of Donald Miller's Blue Like Jazz, one of the most popular Christian books of the decade, has been put on hold until filmmakers can raise more money.

Director Steve Taylor, who has co-written the script with Ben Pearson with creative input from Miller, says they need to raise another $2.8 million before they can move forward with production. Filming for the $3.8 million project was to begin several months ago in Portland, but has been postponed indefinitely.

Taylor says his team is "fully prepped and ready to shoot. All we lack is the rest of our budget so we can finalize our lead cast."

Taylor says he's been surprised at how difficult it's been to raise the money for this project, considering the phenomenal success of Blue Like Jazz—more than a million copies sold, and counting.

"Some Christians came in early with a few hundred thousand dollars, and I just assumed the rest of the money would follow quickly," Taylor says. "It's surprising to me that most of the Christians we've met who have the resources to invest aren't familiar with Blue Like Jazz. The book's readership is primarily people in their 20s and 30s, but the investors we've met with tend to be much older, and typically don't have a frame of reference for what we're trying to make.

"Blue Like Jazz is for a college audience that goes to movies every weekend, whereas most movies developed within Christian circles seem pitched to older audiences that go once or twice a year. A few of the investors we've met have kids who love the book, but it's not like I can wait around until Daddy retires. This movie, like the book, doesn't have a ready precedent—which is one of the reasons I want to make it—but that lack of precedent makes investors ...

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August 2008

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