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How a Catholic Music Duo Found Success After 30 Years: Hollywood Film Tells Amazing True Story

Brothers and musicians Donnie and Joe Emerson recorded the album, “Dreamin’ Wild” in 1979.

The album never gained traction, so they moved on and went their separate ways career-wise.

However, about 30 years later, the brothers received a call from a music label that focuses on lost albums that never received attention.

Dreamin’ Wild,” a new movie based on this true story about the brothers and their Catholic family, tells how they found success after years of obstacles.

The film stars Casey Affleck as Donnie Emerson, Zooey Deschanel as Donnie’s wife, Nancy, and Walton Goggins as Joe Emerson.

ChurchPOP editor Jacqueline Burkepile interviewed husband-and-wife duo Donnie and Nancy Emerson, as well as the film’s director, Bill Pohlad.

Donnie and Nancy travel the country playing and recording music together. Pohlad, also a Catholic, enjoyed telling this family’s story in the film.

Here’s the interview below:

Click here if you cannot see the video above.

Throughout the film, Hollywood director Bill Pohlad includes beautiful Catholic imagery, which tells the story of the Emerson family’s faith.

He included images of the rosary, the Divine Mercy image, and Our Lady of Sorrows, and depicted how the family lives their faith.

Pohlad said he did not want to “hit people over the head” with Catholicism, but chose to tell their story in an authentic way.

“I think it’s more effective to just let it play out naturally,” Pohlad says. “This is how they really are.”

Donnie and Nancy also told ChurchPOP what they hope their Catholic audience takes from the film.

“I want them to see reconciliation and forgiveness,” Donnie says.

Donnie says he also hopes audiences see their family bond.

“We have something special, I know other families do too. The struggles they go through–I just want them to know that it’s real and we’re all in this boat together.”

Nancy jokingly adds that she hopes audiences see that “if you are Catholic, you can still be a rockstar.”

Donnie concludes, “I just want people to know that music comes from God. It just does.”

“To me this film is Divine,” he adds. “You cannot just have something like this happen. It doesn’t happen to an unknown person like me.

“I want people to know [Psalm 46:11]: ‘Be still and know that I am God.'”

Watch the “Dreamin’ Wild” trailer below:

Click here if you cannot see the video above.

“Dreamin Wild” is now playing in theaters.

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