Arize Productions – With Audra Murrieta and Arthur Grigoryan

Arize Productions is a new film company entering the world of faith-based films. Their first short film, Roadside Assistance, will soon be featured at the Bedias, Texas Christian Film Festival. Now they’re hard at work on their next project.
Audra and Arthur, it’s good after all this time to finally settle down for a chance to converse with you about Arize Productions. First, tell us a little about Arize.
Audra: First off, thank you so much for taking the time to interview us. We deeply appreciate it. Well Arize Productions is a film ministry and company that aims to make high quality faith based films. And these films are used as an evangelistic tool.
What role do each of you play? 
Audra: I am the founder of Arize Productions. I also direct, write, produce, and act in these films. I am also the one who takes care of the business side of this company such as promotion and reaching out to other churches concerning our films.
Arthur: My role in this film group is the co-founder and pretty much the onstage and backstage work, I not only get the honor of portraying the Lord himself at times but after that I get to edit the whole thing as well as work on the sound both onstage and offstage.
What is your filmmaking background?
Audra: My film background is really only having been in films, in front of the camera that is. This is really my first time writing film scripts. I have yet to learn about working with cameras but I plan on learning that aspect of film to be more well rounded.
Arthur: I started taking film production classes in high school for about 3 years and I took a theatre class in college plus a few other classes outside of school, just local places to learn more about filming.
What inspired you to get involved in producing short films?
Audra: I have always had a desire to be in films ever since I was a kid. I started out in theatre and my brother and I would make these home movies or comedic skits lol. I was really inspired to step out in faith with Arize a year ago. I was at a place where I was willingly to take risks if the Lord asked me too. I just knew, after much prayer, that this was the time to become a part of the harvest field that is faith based films. Right now, there are films being used as an evangelistic resource to help spread the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Arthur: As far back as I can remember I was always one for shooting little skits with my brothers just for the fun of it. But it wasn’t until at the end of high school when I really was inspired to shoot a few short films, but that kinda died off after graduation. >From that time till now I was just doing minor editing and slideshows for fun but after I met Audra and we both shared out interest in film and possibly one day Shooting a short film ourselves, I was then more inspired to do it. So I prayed on it and God opened doors for us. So in a sense God was my inspiration this whole time, working with me from high school till now and preparing me to do his will.
Tell us a little about Roadside Assistance.
Audra: I wrote Roadside Assistance after having finished a script that was supposed to be Arize’s first short film. We were planning on filming that script but we could never get out to shoot it. So one day, after watching Touched by an Angel, I was telling my mom how they needed to bring that show back because it was such a great inspirational show. After saying that, I decided to sit down and write a script similar to that except instead of using an angel, I decided to place Jesus as the one who comes to the aid of Rick. The character Rick is someone who has lost all hope and he is at the end of his rope. Really, this encounter he has is either going to go down in two ways: he will either regain the hope he lost or he is just going to go on his way being in the same state he is in at the beginning of the film.
Arthur: Roadside is about a man who is lost in the world. Filled with anger and loss, he encounters a man on the road when his car dies, and that man starts bringing up his past and telling him that he’s come to help him and take his pain away. After mentioning his brutal childhood and the loss of his daughter, the stranger urges the man to trust him and it’s then that the man realizes who this stranger is. It’s a short story of how we all have loses in our lives and blame God and wonder where was he at those times. In the end he learns to trust God and God takes away his pain and suffering and he wants to for us all.
I understand you’re now working on a new project. Tell us a little about that.
Audra: I’m very excited to produce this next project of ours. This time, my partner Arthur wrote the script and will be directing it. I will be assisting directing, casting, and producing it. It’s a great script that sheds light on what’s going on in classrooms today.
Arthur: If you have seen Gods Not Dead, than you are gonna love this one, I was inspired to write this a couple years ago and once the script was done I just left it there an hopes I would one day get to it, and now I have! In this project we see a young girl struggling in her class because her professor is an atheist and bashes her for being a Christian, not knowing what to do anymore, she encounters a stranger at school one day and he encourages her to not give up, so she invites him to sit in with her as a guest and so the Epic debate begins between God and an Atheist. In the end the truth always comes out, but as always Love is a key role in it all.
What is the greatest challenge you’ve faced as a filmmaker?
Audra: The greatest challenge I’ve faced, so far, is learning the do’s and don’ts of filming making. For example, how many certificate of insurances do I need? Lol! And trying to get all these film permits so that we don’t run into any problems. It can get quite confusing at times.
Arthur: Me personally, I’ve worked with quite a few people and a lot of equipments to know who’s who and what’s what, but that’s a challenge for every filmmaker, as for the greatest challenge, it would have to be Myself. My own laziness, my discipline, my own time, my comfort, my ambitions, my patience and energy in it all would have to be the greatest challenge because I really would be the only person that stood in my own way.
What do you find most rewarding about producing films?
Audra: The most rewarding thing about producing films is when you hear that your film made a difference in someone’s life. Arize Productions is all about serving our Lord Jesus Christ and letting this whole world know that there is a God who loves them and who is just waiting to pour out His love and grace upon them. We serve a mighty God who makes a way when there seems to be no way and Arize Productions will do all we can to show the audience that.
Arthur: The fact that people could relate to it and encourage us to keep doing what we are doing because we are changing lives through this ministry is probably what I find most rewarding in producing films. Fame isn’t everything, sometimes it’s the small things that really impact peoples heart.
What are your goals for Arize Productions?
Audra: When God placed on my heart to develop Arize, I knew the goal would be to share these films with other churches or Bible studies who might want to use them as topics for their sermons or Bible study lessons. That is still the goal. I would also like to see, if the Lord wills it, Arize producing a feature films. And I’d like to eventually do this full time to better focus on the ministry.
Arthur: I hope and pray that eventually we will have enough equipment and people and finances to be able to minister and reach out to more people than we are now in order to do the work we are called to do by God. Who knows maybe this will turn into a full time job I hope.
Well, thank you for your time. Anything else you wanted to mention?
Audra: I just want to thank my God who made all this possible. It’s because of Him that this ministry is around. I’d also like to thank our family and friends who support us financially through donations and of course the many prayers that are said for us. Also, a quick shout out to IFC drama team lead by wonderful friend/mentor, Davina Garcia. Arthur and I are also members of that drama ministry as well. And thank you again for interviewing us!
Thank you so much for your time, God bless you and I hope to hear back soon! 
Here’s a link to the director’s introduction on our Youtube page: Arize Productions – Directors Introduction

About the Author Sharon Wilharm

Christian speaker, Sharon Wilharm, is a popular media guest, award-winning female filmmaker, and women’s ministry leader, whose faith-based films have screened in theaters, festivals, and churches around the world, and on multiple television networks. Sharon has recently taken over as women's ministry director at her church. Her passion is to lead prayer retreats, engaging women of all ages to pray with each other, for each other, praying with expectation.

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