It’s always a blessing to get to know the actors we see on screen. They allow you to have a peek into their lives and the beautiful work that they do, and you get to gain some wisdom from the much that they have to offer. It’s even better when you perceive the humility and genuineness of their hearts as they converse with you, whether in person or otherwise. Kimberly J. Richardson is one of such. You can see her heart on and off screen, and in her words! I invite you to learn more about this lovely lady in our chat below!
Miranda ~ Hello Kimberly! Lovely to have you visit TBAP today! Could you please tell us a bit about yourself?
Kimberly: Hello Miranda! Thank you so much for inviting me! A little about me: I was born and raised in Indiana where I currently live with my husband, Nate. We have a combined family of five children and four precious grandchildren. I began acting on stage as a teenager, and began modeling in my twenties. I performed in my first film in 2012—Seven Deadly Words—and now continue to enjoy performing in a wide variety of roles in film and television. I love the Lord and give Him all glory for the gifts and opportunities He has entrusted to me.
Miranda ~ How did you become a Christian? What’s the story behind it?
Kimberly: I became a Christian at the age of 29 when God blessed me with my first daughter. It was through her adoption, and becoming a mother, that God led me from a life of darkness to a relationship with Him. I am very thankful and have never looked back.
Miranda ~ What led you into acting? And, as opposed to secular, why choose the Christian film industry?
Kimberly: My becoming an actress was definitely a “God Thing.” During a Sunday morning church service, the pastor said in his sermon, “God wants you to revisit those old dreams you’ve swept under the rug and forgotten about…God wants to use you through those dreams.” The only dream I could remember having was that of being an actress when I was very young. But I didn’t think that could possibly be what God meant. A few months later, I learned there would be a film (Seven Deadly Words) filming right where I live. Leave it to God to drop a faith-based film right in my lap and in my hometown to get my attention! I auditioned and was cast in the last available speaking role.
I am a Christian actress, and am enjoying working in the Christian film industry. However, I work in the secular industry as well. When Jesus was here, He didn’t only associate with believers. He came to reach non-believers, and spent much time with them. I pray over all roles I am offered before accepting them, and have even turned down roles several times. If God leads me to accept a role, then I trust that He has a plan and purpose for me to be on that set. There are many opportunities to encourage people and share God’s love on every film set in both Christian and secular, just as there would be in any situation or line of work.
Miranda ~ How different do you believe the Christian film industry is from the secular? How can it be made better?
Kimberly: The most obvious differences between the Christian and secular film industries are the finished product (the film) and the targeted audience. Christian films usually have a faith-based, family-friendly, redemptive message regardless of the style or story. These are safe, encouraging movies for any age or group. Secular films, on the other hand, may contain the same redemptive encouraging message, but also material unsuitable for younger viewers. The majority of the audiences for Christian films are Christian believers and families. There are similarities in both the Christian and secular industries. They are both made up of creative, imperfect people working together to entertain their audience with quality, memorable entertainment. Both industries can be made better if we, the actors, directors, producers, PAs, and everyone involved, strive to work as a team cooperating for the good of the finished film and the audience. It saddens me when I see someone using a film project to promote themselves at the expense of others, or treating people on set as if they are unimportant. This happens in both industries: faith-based and secular. The cast and crew need to work together as a team, acknowledging that no one is more important than the other; the production assistant is as important as the director, and the background talent is as important as the stars. EVERYONE is important and deserves respect.
Miranda ~ What lessons have you picked up along the way? How has your journey improved your relationship with God?
Kimberly: I have learned to dream big and live my faith out loud. God is faithful to equip those who love and trust Him. Who would have thought that a basically shy and unsure person like me, living in a small Indiana town, would be working with Academy Award winning actors in film and television? With God, all things truly are possible. I trust God to open the doors of projects He has a purpose for me in, and to close tight doors to any roles He does not want me to accept. He has placed me in situations where I was able to share with people of many different faiths and nationalities, to give a Bible to a young lady who had never heard of Jesus, to encourage people diagnosed with serious disease, and to see people come to the Lord and be baptized. God continues to bless and amaze me with the doors He opens and the opportunities He presents me with for acting and ministry.
Miranda ~ Looking back, is there anything you would have done differently?
Kimberly: In my work as an actress, like many others, I always see things in my performances that I would like to have said or done differently, when I watch myself in movies. I think we are our own worst critics. I always try to do my best and stretch myself in every role.
Miranda ~ Can you tell us the movies you’ve starred in or produced? How do you choose your stories?
Kimberly: My most recent film is Losing Breen, a faith-based film about a woman who has early-onset Alzheimer’s Disease, and the struggles her family goes through. She is caught between two competing caregivers, her mother and her son. I was a producer and played the leading role of Anne Losslee in the film. This story was an emotional project for me because I lost both of my parents to Alzheimer’s Disease—my mother only a year ago, during post-production of the film. Some other films I have been a part of are Mission Improbable, Jackson’s Run, Seven Deadly Words, Vanished, J.L. Family Ranch for the Hallmark Channel, and several short films and television series including Discovering Spirit Contemporary, a series for TBN (Trinity Broadcasting Network).
Miranda ~ When you act, what do you hope to pass across to the viewers?
Kimberly: I hope the viewer will enjoy the film and be so involved in the story that they see me as the character I am portraying, and forget that I am an actress “playing the part.” It’s always exciting for me to bring a new character to life and have the chance to touch lives through every story and film.
Miranda ~ What was the experience like on the set of Losing Breen?
Kimberly: Being on set is always exciting and a blessing to me. There are never two days alike. When I was on set for Losing Breen, I was wearing two hats—the producer and the actress. While this presented some challenges—because I was in a leading role and acted almost every day we filmed—it also kept me on my toes behind the scenes. I am looking forward to it premiering this spring.
Miranda ~ What actors/filmmakers have you worked with in the past? How has working with them made you a better actress/producer and Christian?
Kimberly: I have been blessed to work with many skilled actors and actresses including John Voight, James Caan, Melanie Griffith, Billy Ray Cyrus and many others whose names are not yet as recognizable. I’ve worked with many directors and filmmakers who are extremely skilled in their craft as well. Each one has their own style of directing and coordinating a shoot. This has helped me as an actress to learn to be flexible and to be ready for change. There is always opportunity for growth as a Christian, as I am presented with daily opportunities to share my testimony and encourage the people around me. We should be ready to minister at any time, and expect God to lead us.
Miranda ~ In your journey so far, can you say that the actual experience is different than what you imagined it to be? If yes, how so?
Kimberly: I think I was like a lot of people before—thinking that making movies is something that happens only in the glitz and glamor of Hollywood. I was surprised to realize that movies are being made all over the country, including right here in the Midwest. I really had no preconceived ideas about what being on a movie set would be like. I have learned so much and, continue to learn with each new adventure. I am thrilled to be a part of this exciting industry!
Miranda ~ How are you able to balance your career and family successfully?
Kimberly: I am blessed with an incredibly loving and supportive husband. Nate is such a blessing to me. He loves the Lord, and he knows that my work as an actress is what God has called me to do. It is my passion and my ministry. Our children are all grown, so it is just the two of us at home with our three very spoiled Pomeranians—Bandit, Breezy, and Cubby.
Miranda ~ What are you most grateful for generally and at this time in your life?
Kimberly: I am always most grateful for my Savior, Jesus Christ. Without Him, I am nothing. I am an award winning actress not because of who I am, but because of who He is. At this time in my life, I am thankful for the love of my family and true friends, and for continued physical strength in spite of illness. It was wonderful portraying a leading role of a police officer and doing my own stunts!
Miranda ~ What word of advice would you give to anyone venturing into the acting business?
Kimberly: Dream big, and live your faith out loud. Don’t ever be afraid to share the love of Christ. God truly does want to bless you with the desires of your heart—your biggest dreams. Be available to Him and be willing to be used for His glory in whatever path He leads you on.
Miranda ~ What word of advice would you give to a person going into filmmaking?
Kimberly: Again, dream big. Don’t put God in a box. He wants far more for you than you can ever imagine. Do not let anyone tell you that you CAN’T do a particular thing. I’ve been told many times in my life that I couldn’t do something—by doctors, haters, family, so-called “friends,” and in abusive relationships. I’ve dealt with serious health issues since I was a child, and still deal with limitations resulting from diabetes, kidney disease, and seven eye surgeries. I’ve had doctors say I should be blind and in a wheelchair. But God did not agree with them! I travel nationwide doing films. I continue to stay busy as an actress, screenwriter, producer, public speaker, and liturgical dancer. Don’t be afraid to step out in faith and trust God to anoint you for His purpose. There are no limits with God!
THIS or THAT (The Fun Questions!)
Coffee, Tea or Mocha? Tea, both hot and cold.
Heels or Flats? Heels.
Boots or Sandals? Love my boots!
Chocolate or Vanilla? Chocolate. I’m allergic to it, but that doesn’t stop me!
Vegetables or Fruits? Fruit. Any and all kinds. I could live on fruit salad.
Juice or Smoothie? Juice
Rain or Snow? Dance in the rain!
Spring or Fall? Spring. The season of freshness and new life. It’s my favorite season.
Summer or Winter? Summer. Winter is too cold!!!
Cooking or Cleaning? Do I really have to pick one of these? LOL
Breakfast or Dinner? Dinner.
Music or Books? Music. Let’s dance!
Dresses or Pants? Dresses.
Gym or Outdoor? Outdoors
Leather Jacket or Blazer? Love them both! Depends on the occasion.
Thank you, Kimberly, for visiting today!
Thank you again for your invitation, Miranda! I hope my interview will encourage all who read it. Blessings and Merry Christmas!
About Kimberly J. Richardson
Multi-award winning actress, Kimberly J. Richardson, began acting on stage as a teenager and began modeling soon after high school. She performed in her first film in 2012, the multi-award winning Seven Deadly Words, and now continues to enjoy performing in a wide variety of roles in film and television. Kimberly is honored to be a part of the film, Losing Breen, portraying Anne Losslee as well as being a producer on the project.