The movie, which targets a mainstream audience, comes from the same filmmakers behind Generational Sins, a 2017 faith-based movie notable for its heavy use of profanity, something typically shunned by others who target Christian moviegoers.
Writer-director Spencer Folmar put Shooting Heroin on the fast track late last year and recently finished shooting in order to take advantage of the timeliness of the opioid crisis, which President Donald Trump has declared a public health emergency.
The trailer features a character rallying other townsfolk, demanding that those who have died from heroin be honored “with more than just thoughts and prayers.”
Folmar says that dropping the trailer on Independence Day is no accident. “This great nation cannot flourish unless we get a handle on this opioid epidemic now,” he said. “Too many are suffering in silence, be they the addicted, the mourning or the furious.”
Generational Sins, about suicide and alcoholism, was released by Byron Allen’s Freestyle Releasing and did negligible business at the domestic box office, though Folmar says it did well in Brazil and other international territories. A distribution deal for Shooting Heroin is still in the works.
Folmar said he had intended to follow Generational Sins with a film based on the Johnny Cash song The Beast in Me but switched gears to focus on heroin abuse since it is a topic frequently near the top of the news cycle. Government statistics indicate that about 175 Americans die each day from opioid overdoses.
“The worst thing we could do is to do nothing at all,” said Folmar. “This responsibility is on all our shoulders, and we as a nation must come together and unite to bring light to this very dark plague.”
Shooting Heroin was made under Folmar’s Veritas Films banner, while he makes Christian films under his Hard Faith Films label. The $2.5 million movie was shot in Clearfield, Pennsylvania.
The movie stars Sherilyn Fenn, Cathy Moriarty and Nicholas Turturro. Folmar is also producing, as is Mark Joseph, who is producing a movie about Ronald Reagan and associate produced Max Rose, the last film starring legendary comedian Jerry Lewis.