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Pro-life actress shares her story

By Aaliyah Cunningham
Observer Writer

Sunday, November 24, 2019

With a personal and story of how God saved and preserved her life, Ashley Bratcher, the lead actress in the film Unplanned, shared with Jamaica Observer the challenges of playing the most difficult and most important role of her life.

Bratcher takes on the character Abby Johnson, a young anti-abortion activist who was previously the director of a planned parenthood clinic.

Through her faith, and a graphic ordeal in the operating theatre, Johnson becomes resolute and vows to become a supporter of the pro-life movement. The film is based on a true story.

In preparation for this role, Bratcher reveals that she went through hours of research.

“Any time you are playing a real person, you want to make sure you are respecting them, honouring them, and telling their story to the best of the ability,” she said.

“I didn't have the same background as Abby, I never worked in a clinic, I didn't know what an abortion procedure looked like so I had to do some really dark research that I didn't want to do, but in order to tell the story accurately, it just took a lot of time and mental exertion,” she continued.

According to Bratcher, this was the most challenging role she had ever played. The 26-year-old actress also appeared in the films War Room and 90 Minutes in Heaven.

Prior to playing the role of one of America's most profound anti-abortion activist, Bratcher's mother revealed to her that she was nearly aborted. It was this story that completed transformed her from being on the fence as it relates to the abortion debate.

“Prior to doing the movie I was pro-life, but at the same time I didn't want to impede on anyone's decision to choose so if you think about it I was pro-choice.

But I really didn't know any better and after really hearing about how the decision behind me being here today and doing research I am now completely pro-life,” she said.

Bratcher is pleased with the impact that the film has had on its viewers so far and hopes that it can influence viewers in Jamaica who are still unsure where they stand.

“It's not just a movie to go watch for fun, its really a movie about a topic that the world is discussing right now and because of that, it is having an impact around the world, people are watching it and its opening their eyes, they are learning things they never knew about abortion and it's because of the movie,” she said.

The film officially opened at Carib 5 last Tuesday.

“I hope that people who are on the fence will walk out saying wow, I had no idea and I need to explore this more or do more. I think everyone should know why they believe what they believe and be able to explain that. If a movie is so powerful, it says something about it. If you are so pro-choice then the movie shouldn't change your mind,” Bratcher reasoned.