Sandra Bullock gives faith a chance in The Blind Side

LOS ANGELES—When Sandra Bullock read the script for The Blind Side, she liked almost everything about it. She just wasn’t sure she wanted to work too closely with the woman whose life is portrayed in the film. Leigh Anne Touhy, a wealthy Memphis white woman whose family adopted an impoverished African-American teenager and turned his life around, is a Republican and a devout Christian. Bullock, a Democrat, says she brought to the project a lifelong suspicion of people who boast about their devotion to the church.


Watch the trailer for The Blind Side.

“People use it [Christianity] as a banner, and then they don’t do the right thing,” she says in a Los Angeles hotel room. “They go, ”˜I am a good Christian and I go to church, and this is the way you should live your life.’ I said to Leigh Anne when I met her, ”˜One of my biggest concerns stepping into this is this whole banner thing.’ I told her it scared me because I have had a lot of experiences that haven’t been that great. But she was so honest and forthright. I feel I have finally met someone who practises but doesn’t preach. I now have faith in those who say they represent a faith, whereas before I would say, ”˜Do not give me a lecture, because I think I am a pretty good human being. I may not go to church all the time, but I try to do the right thing. You are going to church and sleeping with someone else’s wife, so how are you better than me?’ I finally met someone who walks the walk, and that made me happy.”

In the movie, Touhy and her husband, Sean, offer their couch to a homeless teen named Michael Oher (Quinton Aaron), who is attending their children’s private school. He is at the school because a coach thinks he can use his size to advantage in basketball. However, he is 17 and alone. He has never met his father and can’t find his drug-addicted mother. The Touhys eventually adopt him and turn him toward their own favourite sport, football. (The movie opens on November 20.)

Bullock says that the key to her decision to make the film was that the Touhys didn’t get involved in Oher’s life for any benefits that might come to them. She says she felt the film would promote a genuine selflessness. “They didn’t do it because someone was writing an article or a book or making a movie. They did it because their instinct was to give love and to reach out a hand. Everyone questioned their motives, of course, because we don’t trust anyone who does anything nice. That is the sad world we live in. But they kept going, so it makes you feel that you need to step up your game. I felt it was an inspirational story that says we are more capable than we think we are, even though we don’t really live in a world that supports the good that we can do.”

Comments (10) Add New Comment
Mark Sands
The Touhy's are great non-religious evangelicals whose lives are a testimony to Jesus Christ, who came to bind up the broken hearted and set the captives free. May this movie bring many religious and non-religious people to repentance and faith in Him.
20
26
Rating: -6
Elizabeth Tenety
Sandra Bullock's 'blind' faith

By Elizabeth Tenety

Leigh Anne Tuohy is a Christian woman who wears designer clothes. (It does seem God loves contradictions -virgin birth, anyone?) But in between applying her flawless makeup, running an interior design business and raising two well-behaved children, Leigh Anne Tuohy also managed to do something remarkably un-diva like: She and her husband Sean opened their home to a stranger and welcomed him into their family.

In their act of charity, the Toueys did the right thing, and, according to their evangelical faith, the Christian thing. But often Christianity ends up in the news because of bad press: a pastor's scandal or a priest's phoniness. Most acts of kindness occur without recognition. Does Christianity have a public relations problem?

Sandra Bullock portrayed Leigh Anne Touey in the movie, 'The Blind Side,' a role for which Bullock has recently been nominated for a Golden Globe.

The Blind Side is based on the true story of the then-homeless black teenager Michael Oher and the Tuohys, the wealthy, white evangelical Tennessee family that adopted him. As football fans know, during his time with the Tuohys, Oher developed not only into a confident young man but also into a football sensation. Heavily recruited to play in college, Oher attended Ole Miss and currently plays offensive tackle for the Baltimore Ravens.

Oher's adoptive mom Leigh Anne Tuohy, with her expensive car, dolled-up appearance and don't-mess-with-me attitude may seem more southern belle than follower of Christ, but Sandra Bullock thinks Tuohy is the real deal. In an interview with Vancouver's Straight.com, Bullock revealed that at first she was reluctant to play the Christian woman.

"People use it [Christianity] as a banner, and then they don't do the right thing," she said in the interview. "I said to Leigh Anne when I met her, 'One of my biggest concerns stepping into this is this whole banner thing,'" Bullock recounted. "I told her it scared me because I have had a lot of experiences that haven't been that great. But she was so honest and forthright. I feel I have finally met someone who practices but doesn't preach. I now have faith in those who say they represent a faith."

Bullock is right that there are far too many religious hypocrites to mention. But there are also countless acts of Christian charity that go unnoticed. That's because Christianity faces a dilemma when it comes to tooting its own charitable horn.

Jesus said in the Gospel of John: "By your love for one another they will know you are my disciples," a call to open displays of Christian love.

He also said in Matthew to not be showy about your charity: "What you do in secret, your father who sees in secret will reward you," a call to Christian humility.

When Leigh Anne Tuohy pulled Michael Oher out of the cold and into her home, she could not have known that that one act would transform her from singular Samaritan to model Christian. And despite the private nature of the Tuohy's act of compassion, Hollywood eventually noticed.

The true story of Michael Oher and his relationship with the Tuohys gives us a rare chance to publicly celebrate Christian charity well lived.

Tuohy gave Sandra Bullock faith in the faithful: "I finally met someone who walks the walk," Bullock said.

Does Christianity have a PR problem? Are people who perform good works too quiet about their charity? Or is Bullock right that too many religious people talk the talk but don't walk the walk?
20
16
Rating: +4
mike Horist
Christ came to save sinners not the self righteous, I liked the movie, but they left out them going to church on Sunday, and also the encouragement that comes from fellow believers in Christ. Acts or works do not save us or makes us even more saved. They simply are fruit from which /christ performs thru us to bring glory to HIM ( /christ) We love God because HE first loved us,
26
19
Rating: +7
Mick
Mark,
You do know that to have any beliefs that you live by makes you religous, don't you. This is a dumb remark I hear from many Christians. It's a dumb statement.

Mike,
Works of the law do nothing for your salvation, but works as in Christian charity do. You think that you don't have to do anything. You have to forgive. Or did you forget the parable of Jesus?
26
24
Rating: +2
Janel
Mick,

You're right, as followers of Jesus we are called to forgive others, but that is often times a VERY difficult thing to do. However, at the end of the day we aren't validated before God because we forgive. In fact, we could never be validated before God until we place our trust and faith in Jesus Christ. He was the perfect sacrifice for our sins, not our good works.
18
18
Rating: 0
Carl Parish
God bless Leigh Anne touhy and Sandra bullock. There are many church people that are living in sin, and there might be more nonchurch people who are living right. I am not here to put no one down. No one is perfect. When my mom was alive she did not go to church that much. She live a holy life. She said that some of these churches are social country clubs. That movie about miss touhy and micheal oher made tears come to my eyes. I wish my mom saw this movie.
17
22
Rating: -5
Stuart W
To JANEL, you are wrong..
We are not asked to forgive if it is convenient for us...or easy.. it never is going to be that
AND unless they changed it somewhere, to be Christian is to be Born Again and having made JESUS CHRIST both LORD and Saviour of our life... that should not have to be said but sadly it does have to be said now a days...
What is a Christian... a Non Muslim.. or a Non Catholic ... No!!!
What is a command anyway? God says if we do not forgive others, He will not forgive us...
That is a simple definition of being a Hypocrit. Sure we want GOD to forgive all our sins, no matter what they are.. but we cannot forgive.. Christianity has its problems but GOD is not one of them.. Read the Bible, it is pretty clear on what GOD is asking of us...
And it is HE who is working in us, and gives us the power to do what is hard....
And our job is not to judge anybody.. we are to take care of what we do... period.
and leave others to GOD.. HE is big enough to handle them... and HIS love covers a multitude of sins.. and ours can do so also...
And LEIGH ANNE liked to wear make up and look good and she was successful... so how does that make her less of a Christian???
How could they help Michael Oher if they were living under a bridge somewhere??

To forgive makes us like GOD... what could be greater...????
And it makes us free.. something that is out of this world...that no money or fame can buy
20
22
Rating: -2
Stuart W
To ELIZABETH,
It is not my job to worry about how many Christians are hypocrits or are living in sin...
Everyone sins..do they not...??
How many Christians, after they became Born Again... were suddenly totally pure and HOLY and never did another sin?
The answer... NONE....
The Touhy's did a wonderful act of kindness and helped a young man that needed help...
And that got noticed...
But before Hollywood noticed... let me tell you... GOD noticed and that is what is important...
And the TOUGHY's did something kind and commendable when they helped Michael...
And as LEIGH ANN said, he changed her life...
Helping others helps us... we are blessed and filled with JOY... try it sometime...
But they were and are not perfect people.. or perfect Christians...
We are not called to be perfect... but we are called to try....
And even if we are very less than perfect, we can help somebody... that needs our help...

Here is a thought which I learned in Sunday School..
If you want JOY... put JESUS first, OTHERS second and yourself last of all....
We are called to live our life by the Word of GOD.. the Bible...
It tells us what GOD expects of us.. does not always tell us why..
Read the account of the Virtuous Woman in Proverbs 30...
Was she a DIVA as you like to say..??? She was very active and accomplished just like LEIGH Ann Touhy is...
Wearing make up and being successful does not offend GOD... that is just a religious and wrong idea...
Should not this have been sold and given to the poor?
JUDAS said that and he was a liar and a thief... who cared not one bit about the poor...
And JESUS corrected that statement and said.. NO that should not have been sold and given to the poor... read your bible sometime...
GOD has enough.. HE owns it all.. and HE gives it to His kids, and HE enjoys doing so...
People that are busy helping others and living a real Christian life do not have time to worry about the other Christians who are not....
AND I would say to Sandra Bullock ... how many Christians have you met ???.
You obviously have not hung out with many...
There are millions of real Christians out there... millions....
You are spending your time in the wrong places with the wrong people ....obviously...
17
18
Rating: -1
Cathy Wallace
I would say to Sandra Bullock, whoever, you have hung out with, do not let them keep you from going to heaven! I pray for you!! I agreed with most of Stuart's post except that , unless Sandra Bullock replies herself, we don't know how many Christians she has hung out with. It is before GOD that we all stand and fall.
22
14
Rating: +8
JJ
You guys act as though God and the Bible are fact. That's a little presumptuous right? It's called faith for a reason.
5
18
Rating: -13
Add new comment
To prevent automated spam submissions leave this field empty.