Photo Courtesy of PureFlix.

Karen Kingsbury and Tyler Russell Talk ‘A Thousand Tomorrows’ and Inspirational Stories [Interview]

Award-winning Christian author Karen Kingsbury returns to the small screen with a new series based on her New York Times best-selling books, A Thousand Tomorrows. Kingsbury worked with her son, Tyler Russell, to bring the project to life at PureFlix. Ahead of the series release, I had the chance to speak to both Kingsbury and Russell about their process, and their hopes for their new project.

A Thousand Tomorrows is a story of an unlikely knitting together of two complex, hurting and competitive individuals, Cody Gunner (Colin Ford) a bull rider and Ali Daniels (Rose Reid) a barrel racer.  The series includes delightful, engaging characters, incredible music and authentic storylines. 

The series is based on Karen Kingsbury’s novel of the same name which was published in 2015. The book is part of Kingsbury’s Cody Gunner series. The inspiration for this project came from a conversation with a woman she knew.

Photo Courtesy of PureFlix.
Photo Courtesy of PureFlix.

“I had run into this woman and she had been crying,” Kingsbury told me. “I asked her what was wrong. She said her son and her had gone to the cemetery for the one year anniversary of her daughter-in-law’s death. [The] daughter-in-law had cystic fibrosis and [the woman’s] son had given her a lung. It bought them an additional three years together.”

Kingsbury recalls that she could not get that story out of her head. “I asked myself, what kind of love would it take to give another your lung?  That was the beginning of the story and then God placed the characters on my heart.”

Kingsbury was approached years later to bring the book to the screen. She was busy writing books so she approached her son, Tyler Russell, who had been screenwriting for a while and asked if he would be interested in collaborating and writing the screenplay together. Russell agreed.

The two initially worked on the script separately followed by a two person table read, making sure it matched her novel. They were able to make additions to the story too.

Said Russell, “I created a band of brothers for the main character.”  He continued, “I wanted to surround Cody with bullfighter friends who would serve as a voice of reason for him and also be a source of escape to get him out of his own head.”

Photo Courtesy of PureFlix.
Photo Courtesy of PureFlix.

Russell admits that he wanted the script to be perfect. “We sent it to PureFlix.  We loved working with a company that loved the story and it’s message.  It was a great collaboration all around and we were pleased with the final product.”

Kingsbury hopes that the series will provide entertainment as well as provide viewers with a message.

“I hope that viewers by watching A Thousand Tomorrows will seek the Lord in what He is trying to do in their lives.  Do they have unforgiveness that they are holding onto?  Are they harbouring anger? We sometimes hold on to anger and give it a foothold in our lives.”

The collaboration is set to continue for this mother and son duo through Karen Kingsbury Productions. Someone Like You written by Karen Kingsbury and directed by Tyler Russell is scheduled to be released in the fall of 2023.

Check out the trailer for A Thousand Tomorrows below!

A Thousand Tomorrows streams on PureFlix.

Leave a Reply