Rags and riches: Haven founder Shadyac goes on Oprah Wednesday

Tom Shadyac, the blockbuster director turned soul-searcher, the man who poured part of his personal fortune into a Haven for the homeless in Charlottesville, appears on Oprah Winfrey's television show Wednesday, April 20, according to the show's website.

Shadyac, a 1981 UVA graduate, returned to Central Virginia for several months in 2006 to film his final comedy, Evan Almighty. Afterwards, he endowed a new (and recently controversial) homeless center in downtown Charlottesville.

While it's been noted that Shadyac's trailer park, located along the Pacific coast, contains little of the squalor sometimes associated with such areas (Vanity Fair calls it the "hippest neighborhood in Malibu"), Shadyac has indeed turned his sights on more cerebral film fare. His latest picture, I Am, is a critically acclaimed exploration of the meaning of life.

In the Charlottesville area, the Oprah Winfrey Show appears weekdays at 4pm on NBC29.


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Hello Tom i just saw you on Oprah show today and it was like divine message for me i am desprate to contact you i want to show you to all the people that i am surrounded by i need to talk to you please contact me . please contact me we need you there is lt of us who need
to meet a persn like you please contact me i live in southern California if you send me an e. mail i will send all my infrmatin to you i promis i never ask for money . please cntact me

I want you to know that you really moved me by everything you represent and all that came from your mouth today on the Oprah Show. I dont usually make a habit of watching her show, as I have mixed feelings about her and what she represents...but listening to you makes me want to be a better person and continue on the spiritual path that I am on. I just wanted you to know that. There needs to be more people like you in this world. Thanks.

Would you please send me your mailing address? I would like very much to meet you.


We are our brothers keeper. I was taught when you climb up the ladder reach back and help someone else up. People argue with me all the time about my theory and tell me thats why I never get anywhere. I have had 27 buckets to catch water when my roof leaks but I have a home. I am blessed to not be living on the street. There is always always always someone below to help pull up. I can't wait to see this documentary, I have a feeling it's what I believe in.

I worked nights as a nurse, today is my first day to actually go to bed. However, I got up suddenly for no reason.... turned on the TV and watching Oprah. Then, i was glued to TV while listening to your story. I was just crying hearing your affirmation about the importance of life. Yes, materialism really brought us to this problem right now. The greed and lack of cooperation amongst people. The concept of before before you me first. Its should not be like this.... the world is a beautiful place to live if we start reaching out to people. What a wonderful path to follow........You are such an inspiration.!

Another opportunity to hear Mr. Shadyac's views on compassion.


Tom I can not even begin to tell how good it is to see someone with your belifes and try to make a difference, I have always had to work very hard in my life and I seem to keep finding all the people/bosses in the world that is very all about themselves money and things they have. I have been laid off recently as well as both of my boys being laid off we have lost everything our cars, pride, friends well people that say they are friends. I moved my kids in 1999 from Oklahoma to Maryland away from everyone hoping to give them a better life I have felt like I have let my Kids down and they have felt the have let me down after we watched you on Oprah together we felt like we are just victems of the world we will some how end up being alright if we try to live and think more like you do. Thank you so much!! all of your employees and friends are very blessed to get to work with you and have someone like you in their lives. If you ever need and extra employee or friend it would be an honor! Good luck with everything!! Sincerly, Deanna

Tom, I've been dying a little everyday! My destiny is to help our youth lead a productive, positive and worthwhile life by finding their vision quest. Although GPYS appears to be just another non-profit youth organization that provides recreational and sports programs and services, its clearly not. My heart's passion is to help youth and I know, through you, the powers of the universe will allow me to do so. I've been attempting to start-up GPYS for over 20 years now- Please help me.

Dear Tom, I was empress when I saw you in "Ophra "..very impressive..Nice person like you should be lot of friends, Please count me as one your friend..I am from Pacific Island, My name is Tina........I am a cancer Survivor....Hoping to meet you in person..Please Take care..I put my Email Address..Thank you so much...God Bless You...tina

I have also been made aware of you and your philosophy by watching the Oprah show. I am so glad I did. It's beautiful to see that good does exist.... that someone like you speaks it out and is able to reach so many without having a religion standing behind the words and the person you are. Many seem still seem to confuse goodness with having to be religious. I truly agree with everything you said and hope I am able to make many aware of you. Lots of times, people without a degree or a big name are not being taken serious when they have something to say but here comes you proving those wrong. Thanks so much. I was always wondering, why money had to be in the way of helping people or other creatures on this planet or the whole planet. Why our world is rotating around the putting $$$$ value to everything, especially life. I hope people wake up soon so we can all life in peace and happiness. Thank you again Tom.

I saw you on Oprah and was impressed with your message. But I did not understand if you were married and had any kids. I am assuming you are not. I have to suggest that being married and having kids puts a whole different slant on your message.

congratulations...your spirit has been touched. So sorry it took such a sad accident to bring you to this point. Your light now shines bright for all to see and it will be infectious to those who choose to imbrace their full potential. Worry not about those who believe you haven't given enough...you give till you are happy. If you have reached this point, then may God bless you. Whether it's millions down to a million, or hundreds down to a dollar...it's the way your spirit guides you. I believe you have not only opened up your own eyes, but the eyes of many. It's nice to know why we are put on this earth, you are coming full circle now and isn't it a great feeling! Glad your finding the time to play...it's good for the soul~