*Joe Patterson (Ernie Hudson) is a successful businessman and loving family man who was never deterred by problems because he is a man of strong faith – believing that as is written in Matthew 19:26 with man some things may be impossible “but with God all things are possible.”
In TV One’s new original film, “To Hell and Back,” based on the Book of Job, Patterson’s faith is seriously tested by various horrific events that not only tear apart his picture-postcard family but ravages the multi-million dollar business in Atlanta that he owns.
“Of course in the Book of Job the devil makes a bet with God saying that even though he’s a faithful man that the devil will make him curse God. And God allows him to wreak havoc on his life,” Hudson said when talking about the film. “We see Joe go through all this adversity and we see his business, his family (and) his health (deteriorate). But, I think the more interesting part of it for me was just the struggle that I think a lot of religious people have is when bad things happen to good people.”
“The Hand that Rocks the Cradle” star chose this role because he said it “challenged” him adding at this point in his career, “he has no interest in being in a movie now just to be in a movie.”
Hudson says he thought about his grandmother who raised him when he read the script for the film.
“I know this is the kind of movie that she would want to see and it’s the kind of movie that she would want me to do,” the original cast member of “Ghostbusters” declared. “But it was always the question as a kid that I would have to her – ‘mama how come it’s happening to these people. Those people did some bad stuff and they’re doing great.’ And she would always go ‘we live in a time continuum but we’re eternal. There are things going on that we can’t understand. But all things are working for the good of God’s plan.’ Sometimes it’s not given to us to understand.”
I won’t give any spoilers about the rollercoaster ride the Patterson family goes on – but suffice it to say they suffer misery.
Hudson has landed a recurring role in the ABC comedy pilot Delores & Jermaine about the life of comedian Jermaine Fowler. He gets to make whoopee – sort of – with Academy Award winning actress Whoopi Goldberg, who will be starring on the sitcom.
“I play this character who is kind of her (Whoopi) love interest which is a lot of fun,” Hudson revealed.
He says the reason we see much more diversity on network television is “the success of Empire and Shonda Rhimes and all of her dramas it sort of dispels that old belief that Hollywood has always said that audiences don’t want to see Black characters in these roles and certainly it’s been proven that’s not true.”
You’ll see him on the big screen portraying an amateur player on a French Canadian baseball team in “The Wrong Stuff” and in what he described as a “wonderful story” called “Gallows Road” about loss, heartbreak and forgiveness.
“To Hell and Back” airs Saturday, April 4 at 8 p.m. ET – also stars What’s Love Got to Do with It star Vanessa Bell Calloway.
Hear Tené Croom’s exclusive interview with Ernie Hudson: