Actor Jim Caviezel is known for his dozens of roles on the big screen, including his most notable performance as Jesus Christ in “The Passion of the Christ” in 2004.
In his latest film, “Sound of Freedom,” Caviezel plays Tim Ballard, a former Department of Homeland Security agent who rescues a young boy from child sex traffickers. When Ballard learns that the boy’s sister is still being held captive, he makes it his mission to save her.
“It’s the best thing I’ve done since that film,” Caviezel told The Epoch Times in an interview. “Quality-wise, acting-wise, there’s not a flaw.”
The Angel Studios production is based on the true story of Ballard, a special agent who quit his job to save children from trafficking.
Ballard and several other government agents left their careers in 2013 to found Operation Underground Railroad (O.U.R.), a 501(c)(3) that works to dismantle child trafficking organizations and rescue children from slavery and exploitation across the globe and in the United States. He is also a husband and father of nine children.
“Sound of Freedom” is scheduled for release in theaters nationwide on July 4.
About the Film
Moviegoers can expect a thrill ride that will keep them on the edge of their seats, and they will also leave the theater with insight into human trafficking, “the fastest-growing criminal enterprise in the world,” Tim Ballard told The Epoch Times.
“[Human trafficking] produces $150 billion in revenue every year,” Ballard said, adding that many people do not believe child sex trafficking happens in the United States, but it is a top destination for child trafficking victims, according to UNICEF.
About 2 million children are exploited in the global sex trade each year, Caviezel said in the movie trailer, asking that 2 million people watch the film and help bring awareness to the crimes against children.
“We know this is heartbreaking, and it hurts to look at, but the first step in helping these children is hearing their story,” Caviezel said. “Not enough people know this problem exists, and even fewer people are willing to do anything about it.”
Caviezel said the goal is to inspire 2 million people to attend the film’s opening weekend to represent the 2 million trafficked children around the world.
Of the more than 25,000 cases of runaway children reported to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, an estimated 1 in 6 were likely victims of child sex trafficking. Human trafficking cases have been reported in all 50 states.
“God’s children are not for sale,” Caviezel declared in the film trailer.
“Sound of Freedom” was filmed five years ago, Ballard explained, but it passed through “many hands,” and there was a “movement” to prevent this film from coming out.
The film was rejected by several studios, including Fox, Disney, and others, but Ballard said he did not give up.
Ballard said he knew the film was really good, describing Caviezel as “extremely talented” and the “best actor in the world,” so he had to come to peace with “God’s timing.”
Finally, the film was acquired by Angel Studios earlier this year. It is the studio behind the popular TV series “The Chosen.”
“‘Sound of Freedom’ is respectfully and stunningly filmed, based on real events of undercover heroes bringing hope to many,” said Neal Harmon, CEO of Angel Studios, in a press release. “This film will keep audiences on the edge of their seats with suspense and encourage all of us to take action.”
Ballard told The Epoch Times he believes people were not ready for the movie five years ago.
“It was just [that] the time wasn’t right,” he said. “We needed Angel [Studios] to be ready as well. So, honestly, it’s divine timing.”
Who Else Is in the Movie?
Mira Sorvino plays Katherine Ballard, Tim Ballard’s wife. Sorvino is best known for her role in the 1995 film “Mighty Aphrodite,” which earned her an Academy Award for best supporting actress.
Bill Camp plays Batman, Tim Ballard’s right-hand man. He has had roles in movies including “Lincoln,” “Vice,” and many others.
Pay It Forward
Caviezel asked movie watchers to buy their tickets early and reminded them that money should not prevent anyone from seeing this important film.
Angel Studios has developed a “pay it forward” system that allows people to purchase tickets that can be donated to others who would otherwise not be able to see the movie.
“I am so proud to be a part of this impactful film,” Caviezel said. “In fact, I’d say this is the second most important film I’ve done after ‘The Passion of the Christ.’”
“Sound of Freedom” is produced by Eduardo Verástegui and directed by Alejandro Monteverde. It is rated PG-13.