Based on the New York Times best-selling novel, The Shack takes audiences on a father’s uplifting spiritual journey. After suffering a family tragedy, Mack Phillips (Sam Worthington) spirals into a deep depression causing him to question his innermost beliefs. Facing a crisis of faith, he receives a mysterious letter urging him to an abandoned shack deep in the Oregon wilderness. Despite his doubts, Mack journeys to the shack and encounters an enigmatic trio of strangers led by a woman named Papa, played by Academy Award® winner Octavia Spencer (Best Supporting Actress, The Help, 2011), Through this meeting, Mack finds important truths that will transform his understanding of his tragedy and change his life forever.
Spencer, who plays Papa/God, was already a devout fan of the book, “I couldn’t imagine not taking this journey. My friend gave me a copy of the book and told me it had forensic thriller aspects to it, with a big surprise. I thought I was going to be reading something very different than the life lesson I was bound to get from The Shack. I was deeply moved because it felt organic. The questions asked of God somehow felt like every man’s journey, including my own. I have experienced loss in my life, but the things that bring you back is your faith, so I understood Mack’s journey in a lot of ways.”
For Spencer, this film resonates deeply with her. “What I like about this presentation is that it dispenses with the conventional images of God and what we have in our minds [of] God,” says Spencer. “It also represents this time in Mack’s life where the only person that showed him any kindness was a woman like myself. She is pure love and wisdom and she is trying to impart that in him while he’s trying to reconcile all his grief, his anger and all the losses in his life. It’s only when he walks back and asks those questions and confronts all those issues in the shack that he’s able to find redemption and fill that hole that loss has created within him.”
“She’s extremely generous and present, such an open actress and one I loved learning from.” says Worthington of working with Spencer.
Check out the trailer after the jump.