“BYU Awards Excellence in Religious Films,” Ensign, Feb. 1990, 80
A new Brigham Young University award, the Whitaker Award for Religious Values in Film, was presented on November 29 to Beth Polson, executive producer and co-writer of the CBS television movie “Go toward the Light.”
The film tells the true story of a Latter-day Saint family and their young son who was infected with AIDS from a blood transfusion. Their faith and courage are depicted as they struggle together through the illness to his eventual death.
“This is not a movie about AIDS,” said Beth Polson, “but a movie about helping a child understand the transition between life and death.” The focus is on how faith in God and strong moral character allowed the family to help their son endure his suffering and eventually make that transition from life to death.
The Whitaker Award, presented by BYU’s College of Fine Arts and Communications in conjunction with BYU’s Motion Picture Studio, is given in honor of Wetzel O. “Judge” Whitaker, who headed BYU’s motion picture studio for nearly twenty-two years.
The Whitaker Award will be presented when a motion picture conveys, with exceptional skill, the existence of a loving God and demonstrates the dignity and moral courage of one or more of his children.