Saeed Abedini converted from Islam to Christianity and was helping to build an orphanage in Iran when he was arrested, tortured and sentenced to eight years in prison.
The filmmakers behind Persecuted, an upcoming film about government agents in pursuit of a wrongly accused televangelist, are helping to raise money to build a house for the family of Saeed Abedini, a Christian pastor imprisoned and beaten in Iran because of his religious beliefs.
Persecuted, produced by Gray Frederickson, the Oscar-winning producer of The Godfather Part II, opens July 18. However, a $10-a-seat screening Tuesday night in Rancho Mirage, Calif., has been arranged through Joshua Springs Calvary Chapel, with all proceeds to go to Abedini’s wife, Naghmeh, and the couple’s two young children, who are living with Naghmeh’s parents in Boise, Idaho. The church already has raised $190,000, enough to buy or build a decent house in Boise, but the filmmakers are hoping to raise more to cover moving costs, incidentals and perhaps a bigger home than previously planned.