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‘Office’ Alum Rainn Wilson: God ‘Freaks People Out’ in Hollywood

‘Soul Boom’ author shares life as a believer in show business (and its costs)

Rainn Wilson could call it a career and live comfortably for the rest of his life.

That’s the power of co-starring in an iconic show like “The Office.” The network pay isn’t shabby. Nor are the residuals.

Yet the man many know as office schemer Dwight Schrute wrote a book that will hardly win him friends in Hollywood.

It’s called “Soul Boom: Why We Need a Spiritual Revolution,” and it tracks his colorful transformation into becoming a believer in the Baha’i faith. The veteran actor, according to the book’s blurb, thinks “existing political and economic systems are not enough to bring the change that the world needs.”

Wilson talked about “Soul Boom” and how his beliefs intersect with Hollywood on the “No Small Endeavor” podcast, hosted by theologian and professor Lee C. Camp.

Camp asked Wilson how his spiritual awakening meshed with an industry averse to spiritual dogma. The actor seemed resigned to how his peers view believers, and he shared that sentiment sans  bitterness.

“I‘ve been talking about [faith] in bite-sized pieces for a good 12 years,” the actor said. “Frankly, I think it freaks people out.”

One reason? It’s hardly hip to be a believer in a secular business.

“Most of Hollywood, especially comedic Hollywood, [think] talking about God is the un-coolest thing you could ever possibly do. Comedians will call themselves nerds … but it’s Hollywood, and it’s about who’s sitting at the cool kids’ lunch table.”

FAST FACT: Wilson nearly missed out on his signature “Office” role. The actor says he was committed to a separate TV project with Janeane Garofalo, but when the show’s pilot crashed and burned it freed him up to tackle Dwight Schrute for NBC.

Some stars likely keep their faith a secret or rarely explore it in public. Wilson takes a different, more personal approach partly thanks to “The Office.”

“I’ve had some success … ‘The Office,’ ‘Saturday Night Live’ … I’ve never been invited to sit at the cool kids’ lunch table … people are like, ‘that’s the weird comedy guy talking to Oprah [Winfrey] about God. How bizarre.”


Other actors have shared similar stories about Hollywood’s soft bigotry toward believers.

Kirk Cameron’s strong Christian beliefs found him working on the outskirts of Hollywood after leaving ABC’s “Growing Pains.” His recent projects don’t align with the industry’s values. Actor Neal McDonough says his beliefs similarly cost him work within the industry.

Wilson says there’s no official agenda against faith within the business, but it’s there all the same.

“Do I have any emails [saying he lost work for his beliefs]? No, but I can sense a collective eyeroll about it. It certainly hasn’t helped my career,” he said.

“I do it out of passion, but I may have taken a hit for it, but that’s OK. Fortunately, I was on a great TV show. I got a lot of money in the bank. I’m doing just fine. It might be different if I was still struggling. I might have really re-thought it,” he said. “If I’m a middle-class actor talking about God and trying to do comedy, it’s not gonna help me.”

“THIS Changed My Life” | Rainn Wilson Interview

Previously, Wilson slammed HBO’s “The Last of Us” for exhibiting what he called anti-Christian bias.

“Could there be a Bible-reading preacher on a show who is actually loving and kind?” the “Office” alum tweeted. “Most Christians that I know are kind, accepting and loving and seeking to make the world a better place. They should also be honored in the media.”


  1. Some guy can post that every other religion is Satan, but I can’t post that intolerance is unseemly. You moderators are completely whack, enjoy your bubble.

    1. I won’t be seeing the movie, I’m just over it when producers feel they must input a political agenda Into a movie. When will they learn the public does not see them as worthy rather Hollywood is the laughingstock of the world, Disney is the same. They have lost millions in recent years, so let the downward spiral continue, don’t care who agrees. We watch movies to escape not to listen to their misdirected and woke political views.

      1. Which movie did you mean? Are you sure you replied to the right article? That said, I agree with you that Hollywood and Disney are broken, but openly discussing God, particularly in a non-denominational forum, might help. Peace.

      2. You’re combining articles?! The purpose of the movie, “The Sound of Freedom,” IS to inform. Therefore, they “input” the evil in the world that they wish to expose.

  2. The only religion that is banned in Hollywood is the ONE TRUE FAITH IN JESUS CHRSIT. Period. They don’t care about this Ba’hai nonsense because all of the other “religions” were started by the same entity that started Hollywood ……..Satan.

    1. Whatever religion you are, it is unseemly to call other religions “nonsense,” however much you may disagree with them. TOLERANCE is the handmaiden of LOVE, try it sometime.

      1. If one posted in here that every other gender was Satan, they would get the same response from me as Keith. I defy your generalizations.

  3. Most people only experience any relationship with or knowledge of Jesus through other people…and it’s not surprising when they have a bad impression of who Christ is because people – even Christians – are deeply flawed and sinful.

    Ghandi is reported to have said: “Oh, I don’t reject Christ. I love Christ. It’s just that so many of you Christians are so unlike Christ.”

    Whether Ghandi actually said this, the point should be well taken.

      1. Jrc,

        Steve Bilson did say “reported” so he acknowledged that the Ghandi quote is from a secondary source. That’s not being a gossip.

    1. Whether Ghandi said it or not, it demonstrates the speaker’s utter ignorance of Christianity. First, if it was Ghandi, he was a Hindu, so of course he rejected Christ in the only way that would be meaningful. Second, the fact that Christians are so unlike Christ is the whole point. There is, after all, a reason why Christians refer to Jesus by such terms as Savior and Redeemer.

    1. No it is quite serious. Hollywood is very much Satanic and anti-Christian. You have to do some terrible things to get a break as an actor in the industry.

      1. Yes Hollywood’s favorite god is the god that needs children flesh to be appeased – but –
        You didn’t read the story. This isn’t about Christianity this is about the B’hahai religion. You interjected Christianity because that’s what you wanted to see.

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