Cusack Conveys War's Personal Toll

Voices: Actor's film, 'Grace Is Gone,' deals with dad whose wife dies in Iraq.

Dec. 9, 2007 — -- Actor John Cusack's new film, "Grace Is Gone," reflects on the Iraq war's personal toll here at home.

John Cusack: They get the knock on the door that's happened to so many -- you know, over 3,000 people -- where their life has changed in a moment.

[Scene from film: Cusack opens door to find two officers.]

Officers: "Sir, may we come in?"

Cusack, in character [shakes his head]: "No."

Officers: "Mr. Phillips we regret to inform you that Sgt. Grace Anne Phillips was killed on March 12."

Cusack: I just wanted to do something that just told the human side of it and would allow people of any ideological perspective to kind of come together and find common ground.

I wanted to explore the reality of grief and loss so that the war didn't become another abstraction that's on the television. And the pundits on both sides -- of left versus right, you know -- they attack each other and use it as a political football. And I really felt very strongly that I wanted to tell a story about one of those coffins coming home and tell a story for those families.