American Prophet has been featured in a number of news stories and articles. Watch to find out more about the project, see interviews with Bishop Thomas Gumbleton and director Jasmine Rivera, and watch behind the scenes footage from the making of the film.

CHANNEL 4 WDIV FIRST BLOCK "Movie tells story of unorthodox Detroit priest":

 CHANNEL 7 WXYZ DETROIT "Short Film Looks At a Year in the Life of Bishop Thomas Gumbleton and the City of Detroit in 1968":

MICHIGAN PUBLIC RADIO STATESIDE WITH CYNTHIA CANTY "'American Prophet' shares story of Detroit bishop's fight for social justice":

FOX 2 DETROIT "Bishop's Story of Civil Rights Struggle After 1967 Turns Into Movie":

Click to watch a conversation with American Prophet director Jasmine Rivera and reporter Devin Scillian on Channel 4 WDIV Detroit's Flashpoint program:



2014 Kresge Arts Fellow Jasmine Rivera’s fifth narrative film, American Prophet, begins shooting in Detroit in December of 2014. Based on the life of internationally-renowned peace and social justice advocate Bishop Thomas Gumbleton, American Prophet’s inspirational coming of age story unfolds in settings that range from the humble city parishes of Detroit to the hockey rinks where Thomas and his friends – the United States’ only hockey team for priests—play. Set in the aftermath of the Detroit riots and in the tumultuous days of 1968, American Prophet is a unique glimpse at a past whose struggles resonate to our day as well as the portrait of a young man who learns to come into his own.

 Anawim Productions has assembled a brilliant team of lead actors for American Prophet:

 JONATHAN C. STEWART (BISHOP THOMAS GUMBLETON) A Michigan native, Jonathan trained at SUNY Purchase Acting Conservatory. His recent New York theater credits include King Lear at the Theatre for a New Audience, Hedda Gabler, Gut Girls, Rock ‘n Roll, Much Ado About Nothing, Peer Gynt, Loves Fire, and King John. On film, Jonathan has starred in Buffalo ’66, The Hunt and Deady Dearest. Jonathan is currently shooting the new AMC series “The Making of the Mob.”


FRANK DE JULIO (FR. KENNETH UNTENER) trained at Circle in the Square Theater School and Shakespeare & Company. His credits in New York Theatre include Richard III at 4th Street Theatre, Unnatural Acts (co-author/Keith Smerage) at Classic Stage Company (Drama Desk nomination for Outstanding Play), The Living Newspaper, Monstrosity, Dillingham City at Playwrights Horizons, Cymbeline and Twelfth Night . His TV credits include “Smash,” “Criminal Justice,” “Inside Amy Schumer,” “Blue Bloods,” “Gossip Girl,” “White Collar,” “Law & Order,” “As The World Turns,” “One Life To Live.” On film, he has starred in HBO’s Emmy Award-winning The Normal Heart, A Walk Among The Tombstones, and Gabriel.


ROBERT NAJARIAN (FR. NORM THOMAS) is an actor, instructor, and fight director hailing from the East Coast. As a performer, Najarian has been seen in more than 40 productions in cities such as New York, Chicago, Washington, DC, and Boston with such companies as The American Repertory Theatre, Washington National Opera, and Punchdrunk, where he was an original cast member of the critically acclaimed show Sleep No More in New York. He received his BA at Bowdoin College and his MFA at the Shakespeare Theatre's Academy for Classical Acting at George Washington University.


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