Rich Christiano (Time Changer, Unidentified) shared this touching story in his Christianmovies.com newsletter:
I want to tell you a story that is very touching and shows the power of Christian films. Recently, my brother Dave and I had the pleasure of sitting down at the NRB Convention with Russ Doughton, the Producer of the famous prophecy films that includes Thief in the Night and a real pioneer in the Christian movie industry. Russ, who is nearing 80 years young now, is still very committed to the cause of Christ and Christian films. In fact, he is one of the few that really wants to exalt the Lord in films. My brother Dave asked him an interesting question. "Russ, what is the hardest film you ever made?" To our surprise, here was Russ's answer.
"It was back in 1954 and the first project I ever worked on," Russ said. "I was in my mid-twenties and I was hired to produce and direct a program with Henry Geiger called The Children's Gospel Hour. I got the job on a Tuesday and we started shooting the next Monday. I didn't know what I was doing. This was a weekly TV series for children presenting the gospel. But, I did the best I could and we made the program. Well, twenty years later, just after I did Thief in the Night and had started Mark IV Pictures, I wanted to make a children's film called Happiness Is. So, I went to a local church and observed a woman teaching in a Sunday School class to children. She was excellent with the way she handled the children and so I asked her if she would come to our office to help us write our script. She agreed and I met with her everyday for two weeks and we worked on the script together. Then, suddenly, she told me that today was her last day. Why? I asked. She told me that she and her husband were moving in two days and tomorrow she'd have to help him pack. I was sorry to see her go since we were still working on the script but thanked her for all her valuable insight."
Then Russ added this.
"As she was leaving, I just felt led to asked her, by the way, how did you become a Christian? She turned to me and said, well, when I was eleven years old, I was watching this program on TV called The Children's Gospel Hour and gave my life to the Lord."