In the upcoming book The Vow: The True Events that Inspired the Movie Kim and Krickitt Carpenter’s true story of memory lost and love found… again — debuts Feb.10, 2012, in an updated and expanded version from B&H Publishing Group. This reissued book inspired this upcoming major motion picture starring Rachel McAdams (The Notebook) and Channing Tatum (Dear John), which also releases on February 10.
The Carpenters recently agreed to answer my questions about the various experiences surrounding the upcoming film and their reissued book, which includes an additional chapter and new 16-page photo insert expanding their original 1996 book The Vow.
The Vow traces actual events from the 1990s, when Kim and Krickitt met, fell in love and married. Just 10 weeks later, the couple survived a terrible car wreck with Krickitt awakening in the hospital married to a stranger. The accident had claimed 18 months of Krickitt’s memories, including all recollection of Kim.
With Kim committed to his marriage vows and Krickitt maintaining her strong Christian faith — even if recent memories were gone — the couple began the long road to a rebuilt relationship, with a second wedding ceremony and renewal of their vows. Here are Krickett’s answers.
Please describe the devotion and sacrifice you both experienced after the accident, including the subsequent writing of the book about these experiences.
After the accident life was very confusing for me. I can remember being back in my parents’ home in Phoenix at the beginning of April. I had been there doing outpatient rehab at Barrow Neurological Institute since mid-January; however, that time period is lost from my memory. I recall in April that I had my mom take me to a Christian book store so I could buy a journal to start journaling again to the Lord and spend time with him in bible study. I did not understand what was happening to me but I turned to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in order to express the confusion, frustration, and craziness I was dealing with. I was told I was married to Kim so I just accepted it, not realizing I had no memory of it. I had a severe head injury so it takes years to recover. I was a person of my word so for me I was told I was married so that was that and I tried to regain this life I once lived.I was very devoted to the Lord and held verses close to my heart and trusted Him at His word. Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.”
So, to me… .All is all and He will give me the strength to go day by day. In addition, Romans 8:28 says that “All things work together for the good for those who love God and to those who are called according to Christ Jesus.” Again, all is all and I Loved the Lord and good would prevail out of this situation. Obviously, at the time I had no idea of how the good would be revealed but I trusted Him and trusted the Word of God.
We were devoted to the book to share the truth of our story and allow others to see the Lord’s amazing work. We have an amazing story due to the Lord, our devoted parents, brothers and friends. I persevered through the days because I trust the Lord’s promises.
Please describe the initial reaction then following thoughts and feelings regarding the announcement that the movie would be filmed in Canada and Chicago instead of New Mexico and how this change might have affected overall expectations of the movie adaptation.
I think at first, it was a little disappointing that our movie was not going to be filmed in New Mexico since our state films many motion pictures here and our story occurred here; however, I understand that they film movies many times where the main actors have homes. That is okay with me. I too would enjoy to live in my own house instead of living in a rented house or hotel if it were possible. I realized then that the movie was not going to be our exact story.
Your story has grown into an experience that so many people want to tell. Please describe what challenges you both experienced when other people communicated your story to others. Did they try to understand you both as people or just try to sensationalize the story and put their own “spin” on it.
When we share our story with a variety of people, I know that I try to be very clear with my answers and explaining the truths of what I have dealt with. I know that people may want to hear something happened a certain way but I tell the truth on how things occurred. Of course, the media may play up certain aspects of our story but I don’t believe our story really needs to be changed. I feel it is beautiful, real and powerful just the way it is. In the past, for the most part, our story has remained intact.
Please describe why you both decided to add more information about the events that occurred after the initial book release within the new re-release of the book.
We wanted to let people know what has occurred in our lives over the past 10 years. We have had ups and downs in our marriage just like everyone else but we remain devoted to each other and the bows that we made in 1993. We have had things happen to our family that we never could have imagined but once again, only by the Grace of God, we have been blessed.
Please describe both of your feelings before the upcoming Hollywood premiere and international premiere in London relating to how many more people will see your story after a development process that lasted 17 years.
I am very excited that our movie is finally hitting the big screen. After so many years, it is hard to believe that the big day for the Hollywood premiere has almost arrived. Wow! It is very exciting that the movie has been made and we love Rachel and Channing. They are darling and they capture the basic idea of what we dealt with. Our God is an awesome God and His timing is perfect. We firmly believe people will love the movie and we hope they desire to learn more about our true story. Our heart is in the book as we wrote it and it shares the personal details of journey.