Andrea Logan White: Moms' Night Out

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Andrea Logan White's resume ranges from heavy drama ("Sarah's Choice") to light comedy ("Veggietales: Princess and the Popstar") to apocalyptic action ("Revelation Road: The Beginning of the End"). But it has been consistent in one respect: it's target audience of Christian viewers. This May, she stars opposite Patricia Heaton (The Middle), Sean Astin ("The Lord of the Rings" trilogy), Glee's Harry Shum Jr., and country music superstar Trace Adkins in the family-friendly comedy "Moms' Night Out."

We spent a few moments with Andrea to discuss her role in the film, and about being a Christian in the film industry.

You'll be starring in the upcoming film, "Moms' Night Out." But you're more than just acting in it -- this was your baby from the beginning, wasn't it?

Yeah. It was very close to home. I think we had Baby #2, and my husband and I were struggling to have some time to get out of the house. We actually went out to see a movie, and came out of it saying we need to do a movie about marriage and family -- and the suffering, but the comedy that comes with the suffering of being a parent and being married and trying to juggle it all. So we came up with some concepts, and brought it to our writer, Andrea Nasfell, who's wonderful, and before you know it, here we are. We're really proud of it and really excited.

Your character, Izzy, is a departure from some of the other characters you've played, not just in personality but in makeup. You look much more put together in your other films, and more frazzled in this one. What inspired that character and what was it like getting made up that way?

I think there's such a cool mesh between all the characters. There's the character who thinks that she has it all together, yet there's a little bit of unawareness. And it was really fun to kind of play "the dork." Izzy's a control freak, and she does everything she can to keep it together, to wear the pants in her marriage, to try to tell her husband what to do -- and in the meantime, Izzy's kind of like the idiot in charge of her family. She's crumbling underneath.

It was so fun to kind of play that person, because I think we can all relate to feeling like we have it all together -- and then there was the fun part of just being kind of goofy. She's a goofy person. She wears funky clothes, she has the glasses, she's trying to be pretty but she's still kind of nerdy. And me, I always say that I'm the biggest dork at heart, so it was fun to play that. Sure, who doesn't like to be made up to be the glamorous one? But I really didn't mind. I had a great time. I actually grew up with glasses and braces in junior high, and was that ugly duckling for those few years, so it was kind of nice to bring her back because I think we all have those insecurities, even though some of us may not show it.

You're starring opposite Patricia Heaton on this project. Had you worked with her before? How did you bring her into this?

No. Patricia Heaton, we are fans of hers. She's on The Middle, which my kids love, and she's got such a great sense of humor. She's brilliant in what she does. I had such a great time -- all of us did. She was just the sweetest, most down to earth person to work with, and everybody loved having her on set.

"Moms' Night Out" is a Christian film -- or at least Christian friendly. Is that a correct assumption?

Yes. I always say some people aren't ready to go into church. Whether you're a Christian or you're not a Christian, not everybody feels like they're at that place in their life where they want to step their foot into church. But everybody wants to be entertained. Anybody wants to go see a movie. So you can hit the Christian audience and the non-Christian audience, but still bring that message of putting God first, and God's love. And maybe you're not hitting somebody over the head with the Gospel, but making it very clear that that is something that we want people to know that God is there and He loves you, and if you put God first everything else in life falls in place. It's cool to be able to make more of these films that reach a broader audience, that can hopefully bring them closer to the Lord.

Were you a Christian before your movie career, or after it started?

In the middle, I would say. I became a Christian in 2001. I moved to Hollywood in 1998. I had been pursuing acting and trying to juggle everything, and just was really beaten down by Hollywood. Hollywood tells you everything that you're not, and God is really the only one in His word that tells you what you are. And I had a turnaround. A lot of people can be very famous and do it without God, but I sure enough couldn't, and it was very clear. So I am quite grateful that early on in my career I found a relationship with Him, and everything else just kind of fell into place once I started walking with the Lord and going to church and really doing things the way God called us to do them.

I ask this of all the Christian artists I interview, and it seems to me it should be the easiest question to answer, but often seems to be the hardest. Why? Why are you a Christian?

I've never had anybody ask me that. It's really fascinating and interesting and simple! I pretty much tried to do life on my own. Growing up, I had to raise myself -- I was an adult at a very young age. I had to be responsible at a very young age, and life was very hard for me.

It still is. But I find great peace with knowing -- through prayer, through reading God's Word, through watching sermons -- there's something that resonates (we know it's the Holy Spirit), something that gives me great peace knowing through my trials and through my struggles that I have somebody above me that is taking charge, that I don't have to do it by myself.

It's a knowing. A lot of people say, "How do you know?" It's a trust, something that resonates with my spirit and my heart, knowing that I do have God there, that through His Word, through His truth, through worship, through prayer, I find a great surrender. I tried to control (I still do, but God doesn't really let me get that far!) everything in my life; and the more we try to control things, I think the more out of control we feel. That's why I'm a believer. I'm proud of it. I'm proud of saying that I am a Christian, and I'm not ashamed of the way God has made me. Everything just makes sense. Sometimes it's really hard to explain in a sentence, or in two minutes, but it just works. It makes sense.

There's a swell of Christian themed movies coming out all at once -- "Noah," "Son of God," "God's Not Dead." As an insider in the industry, do you see this as some sort of a high tide for Christian films?

We would like to believe so. "God's Not Dead" is actually one of our Pure Flix films that will be out today. I feel like this is a resurgence since Jim Caviezel was in "The Passion of the Christ." It seemed like Hollywood shunned Christians, and we were the people that you didn't want to be known as. I feel like it's God's timing, and we're excited. We're going to try to "ride the wave." I feel like there's so many movies that you can't take your family to, and I feel the demand has definitely increased to be able to do it, so we just feel grateful and we're looking forward to seeing how the doors open and what God does with them, because definitely there's a great handful this year that are biblical-based. We're proud to be a part of it.