FDM alum sought, found authenticity at movie screening Thursday night

Alum Will Bakke participates in a Q&A following an on-campus screening of his film “Believe Me” with Baylor students Thursday night.Skye Duncan | Lariat Photographer
Alum Will Bakke participates in a Q&A following an on-campus screening of his film “Believe Me” with Baylor students Thursday night.
Skye Duncan | Lariat Photographer
By Hannah Neumann
Staff Writer

Baylor alumnus William Bakke is using his natural talent and passion for filmmaking, along with the skills he acquired at Baylor, to spread a Christian message in an appealing yet unconventional way.

Bakke, who graduated in 2012, visited Baylor to bring a special viewing of his latest film, “Believe me,” to a group of film students and students involved with the arts. Bakke participated in a question and answer segment after the screening.

“I thought that the movie did a great job of discussing Christian culture but not throwing it blatantly in your face,” said Kingwood freshman and studio art major Erica Thorpe.

Though Bakke’s Christian message does show through in “Believe Me,” the movie is far from a typical film in the category.

“We don’t want to preach to the choir, we don’t want to make movies that have an altar call at the end and wrap everything up in a cute bow,” Bakke said.“We want to tell compelling stories and my Christian worldview will still come through no matter what we make.”
Bakke said audience responces have been good, but surprising.

“We kind of thought Christians were going to hate this movie,” Bakke said. “But it seems like they are embracing it the most, which is really encouraging. Any time you talk about politics or religion in a movie you’ll get some backlash and opinionated reviews but you gotta do you and be authentic.”

Bakke said that he accredits a huge part of his success in his career to the professors he had during his time at Baylor.

“I felt the whole time I was here that I was given so much creative freedom to just go out and try,” Bakke said. “When I needed these professors or had questions they were right there to help me.”

Thorpe said she agrees.

“I wasn’t surprised when I heard that Bakke was going to be at the screening because the relationship between professors and students here at Baylor are so much more than surface level.”

In fact, when Bakke finished the script for the film, three years after his graduation, he sent it to his former professor, senior lecturer for the film and digital media department, Brian Elliott for advice.