Archive for December, 2008

Movie Question: Did I see the real Brad Cohen and Nancy Cohen in the movie?

Thursday, December 11th, 2008
Brad and Nancy Cohen make their cameo appearance in Front of the Class

Brad and Nancy Cohen make their cameo appearance in Front of the Class

YES YOU DID!  Brad and Nancy Cohen can be seen in their cameo appearance after the orchestra concert as little Brad is getting up out of his seat and heading to the front of the auditorium with his principal.  Brad and Nancy Cohen are standing in the back acting like teachers.  It is a quick 2 or 3 seconds so don’t blink.

We thought this would be the best scene to have us in because it was the most important scenes in the movie.  It was at this point in my life when I realized the power of education.  It was from this moment forward where I knew I wanted to be that teacher that I never had.

This scene took almost 8 hours to shoot because as the director, Peter Werner, stated “We needed to get this scene right because it is such a powerful moment in the movie and in Brad’s life.”

Did you get a chance to see me and Nancy?

Movie Question: Did I really meet Nancy my first year of teaching?

Wednesday, December 10th, 2008
Notice the new Cardinals hat I gave Nancy right after the proposal!

Notice the new Cardinals hat I gave Nancy right after the proposal!

Nancy will you marry me?

Nancy will you marry me?

The Wedding Day with Yummy Cake!

The Wedding Day with Yummy Cake!

Many people have asked me if I really met my wife Nancy my first year of teaching. And the answer is no. We actually didn’t meet until 2004, while my first year of teaching was 1996. For the sake of making the movie only last 2 hours, they had to move the timeline up a few years to make things work. I mean come on, would this movie really have happened without a love scene………this is a Hallmark Hall of Fame movie of course! Nancy always kids around saying that this movie would not have happened without her being part of the story. She might be right:) I mean we all remember the big kiss scene at my mom’s house on Thanksgiving! Yucky 🙂

The one thing I was surprised Hallmark didn’t include was the way I proposed to her. It was in Napa Valley where I surprised Nancy and went up in a hot air balloon and down below was a 20 foot sign saying “Nancy will you marry me?” I had to add the picture because I knew you wouldn’t believe me. I mean come on, this all can’t possibly be true? Can it?

Movie Question: Was Heather Real?

Tuesday, December 9th, 2008
Brad and Heather visit for final time

Brad and Heather visit for final time, click on the picture to see a better quality photo

Heather was a real person! In the movie, the timeline was a little different. Heather was in my first 2nd grade classroom in 1996 and didn’t get sick until her 5th grade year. She passed away from Cancer in January of her 6th grade year.

To learn more about Heather and the impact she made in my life, check out Chapter 13, “Remembering Heather.” You’ll be able to read about Heather’s “Fifth Grade Walk,” our last visit together, my feelings during the funeral, and how I made sure Heather was never forgotten as we got our school involved with Relay for Life and the American Cancer Society.

Here you will see a picture of Heather and I during our last visit together before she passed away.

I know that many people were touched by the loss of Heather in the movie. She was a special girl and I’m honored that “Hallmark Hall of Fame” wanted to keep her memory alive in the movie. I know Heather’s family is grateful.

Katherine Shepler did an amazing job in the movie playing the role of Heather. I know we will see Katherine in many more movies in the future. Everyone on set enjoyed being around her. Heather would be proud of her!

Front of the Class is a Hit on CBS as 12 Million Viewers Watch

Monday, December 8th, 2008

What an amazing 2 weeks I have just had. First we saw the movie at the Kansas City Premiere with the Hallmark Executives. Then we went to the LA Premiere with all the big name actors, writer’s guild members and Front of the Class team. Next was the Atlanta Premiere were we watched the movie with family, friends, and local actors. To top it off, I had a chance to see my movie, on my TV, in my lazy boy, in my jammies, in my own home like the rest of America saw it (with commercials).

I’m very proud of this movie. Jimmy Wolk and Dominic Scott Kay played me better than I play myself. Peter Werner (director) and the rest of his team put together one heck of a movie. Hallmark Hall of Fame is an amazing company and I could not ask for anything more. The 234th presentation of a Hallmark Hall of Fame movie was ten times better than I could have ever wanted.

The emails that have come POURING in is a sign of the impact this movie has made across our nation. The positive energy that came from the viewers is something I will forever cherish. The support of my friends and family is something I’ll savor. And the lessons we will all take away from Front of the Class shall be legendary.

Although some will say this is the end of an amazing experience, I believe this is the beginning of an incredible journey. My mission is to make a difference one day at a time. I hope that others will help me achieve this goal. With a positive attitude, a passion for life and never giving up…….we can all achieve our dreams like I have.

Thanks for tuning in to CBS to watch Front of the Class. The movie will be out on DVD in late January in Hallmark stores around the country. In the meantime, grab your book copy of Front of the Class now so you’ll have it around from many years to come.

Thanks for all the support and let’s continue the celebration.


P.S. Yes Nancy and I do love Milli Vanilli !!!!!

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"Brad Cohen is a walking billboard for the idea of living positively. He is like a cold drink on a hot day--refreshing, energizing, and likely to put a smile on your face."
Tim Shriver - Chairman of Special Olympics

"I have observed the magic of Brad Cohen in the classroom. He has turned Tourette Syndrome into an asset, and his life into inspiration."
Senator Johnny Isakson, Georgia

"Brad Cohen's story is a triumph of hope, determination, will and relentless good humor."
Peter J. Hollenbeck, Ph.D., Professor and
Associate Head of Biological Sciences,
Purdue University

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