February 8, 2010
Filming Begins on Soul Surfer in Hawaii
True story of Christian surfer Bethany Hamilton, who lost an arm to a shark attack
Quaid and Hunt will play Bethany's parents, while Robb will play the young surfer in the film, slated for a 2011 release. Robb (Bridge to Terabithia, Because of Winn-Dixie, Race to Witch Mountain) is wearing a green sleeve on her left arm, which will be digitally removed for the film. The cast also includes star singer Carrie Underwood (as a church youth leader) in her film debut, plus Jack Nicholson's daughter Lorraine Nicholson (as one of Bethany's friends) and Kevin Sorbo (as Holt Blanchard). Sean McNamara will direct.
Press materials say the film will chronicle "the rise of a promising young athlete, a debilitating tragedy and one of the greatest sports comebacks ever," Hamilton first competed as a surfer at the age of 8, and was on her way to stardom when she was attacked by a 14-foot tiger shark in 2003 while surfing off Kauai's North Shore.
"Losing more than half her blood, yet miraculously surviving, Bethany was now living without a left arm. The determination to pursue her dream, however, had not been taken away. She was back in the water a month later, learning to paddle with one arm and to find her balance on the surfboard. . . . Two summers later Bethany took first place in the NSSA National Championships, [and in] 2008, Bethany began competing full-time in the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) World Qualifying Series." Here's some footage of her at a recent pro event.