Popular articles

• My Week as a Vegan
• Healing Power of Creativity
• Life as a Herbivore
• Fracking the Country
• The Ethics of Cosmetics
• Yoga Nidra: Sweet Dreams
• Spice up your Raw
• Parvati Valley

Bookmark and Share

Popular articles

Fermentation Fever...
A Yoga Retreat full of Heart
My Week as a Vegan
Healing Power of Creativity
Life as a Herbivore
Fracking the Country
The Ethics of Cosmetics
Parvati Valley

Eco articles

Life as a Herbivore
Fracking the Country
• Free Flow: The plastic
bottle industry
Off Gridder – Nick Rosen

Nutrition articles

Fermentation Fever...
Spice up your Raw
Life as a Herbivore
Easy Steps to Summer Skin
Inspired Recipes

Travel articles

Maravilhas: Portugal
Eco Communities

Spirituality articles

Parvati Valley
To Think or Not to Think?
Road to Peace - Leon

Inspiring People &
Project articles

Dan Glass: Social Activist
Jane Goodall: Primatologist
Nick Rosen: Off Gridder

Other articles

The Plight of our Feathery
Healing Power of Creativity
• Top to Toe

Road to Peace

First-time Director, Leon Stuperich, answers some questions about his recent release, Road to Peace. Leon was granted unprecedented access to the Dalai Lama during a visit to the UK, and thus a very insightful documentary into his life and work was born.LeonandDalaiLama

Q. How did it materialise that you could have access to the Dalai Lama for this film?

A. Road to Peace is the first film I have directed. We were speaking with the Dalai Lama’s representatives in London about another film and what emerged was an invitation for me to put in a proposal to document the Dalai Lama’s visit to the UK in the following year. Of course I jumped at the chance and quickly knew that what I wanted to portray was the nature of Dalai Lama, and his message that inspires hundreds of millions of people around the world.

Q. When did this happen?

A. Filming began in 2008 with the wonderful support of the Tibet Society in London. It took a further four years of editing, finding archive material etc, to finish the film. The real task was to ensure the film captured the true spirit of the man himself; the human side of the Dalai Lama. Not just the political side that is so often represented in the media, but the humanitarian and spiritual leader that attracts crowds of thousands of people to hear him speak. We are delighted with the final result and to see so many people deeply moved from watching the film.

Q. Tell us a little about the journey from filming to completion.

A. When making a film about a person, the only way to truly tell the message is to understand it on a deep, personal level. So making a film about the Dalai Lama was a fascinating and deeply profound process. Not only to honour his message of Peace, Compassion and Universal Love, but also to represent the Dalai Lama in his true light. The film was screened dozens of times with test audiences and this was a crucial part of the creative process. It is the only way to know if the film is connecting with the heart of an audience. The film is an experience rather than just a movie. When we hold screenings we like to emphasise this with Buddhist chanting, live music and dialogue.

Q. What struck you most about the Dalai Lama whilst in his presence?

A. We were very lucky to have incredible intimate behind-the-scenes access to the Dalai Lama. The most remarkable thing to notice is how humble he is, whilst at the same time extremely self-confident. When he meets people, regardless of their status, he greats everybody in the same manner. Whether it’s the Prime Minister or someone in a crowd on the street. But when he talks to you he pays you full attention, and for those few moments it feels as if there is nobody else but you and him. His gentle but powerful warmth and kindness exudes from him and he really does seem to mean what he says when he describes himself as a ‘simple Buddhist Monk’.

Q. How did the experience impact you personally?

A. Every time I watch the film I understand a little bit more about RTPPosterApril2013the Dalai Lama and his message. The remarkable thing is that it’s not so much about his words, but the way he is in himself – it’s how he is with the people he meets that is the most inspiring. So, he sets an example of how we can be more peaceful and compassionate in our lives, and he embodies the message he shares. I have absorbed a lot of the wisdom that he shared with us, and many of his sayings have become mantras for my own life. For me, the real impact comes from learning to be – to behave, in a more compassionate way.

Q. What do you feel is the message of this film?

A. Change starts within. Not just personal change, but if we want to change the world for the better then we must change ourselves first. As Gandhi famously said, “be the change you wish to see in the world”. If you become more peaceful, then the world has already changed. But what we DO, is the most important factor. The Dalai Lama’s message is a call to action, to get up and solve the problems we face in the world. So education is just as important as developing inner values.

Q. How can our readers get to watch Road to Peace?

A. We are currently doing the rounds at the film festivals, recently winning the Audience Award for Best Feature Documentary at the Albuquerque Film and Media Experience (AFME) in New Mexico. We are also hosting screening events around the country and you can buy the DVD from our website.

For more information and to watch the trailer, visit: www.roadtopeacefilm.com

uploaded 13/01/14

Download PDF of Article