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- Year: 2001
- Film Format: 16mm
- Origin: USA
- Aspect Ratio: 1:1.33
- Runtime: 93 mins
- Language: English
Harvard professors Richard Alpert and Timothy Leary made countercultural history in 1963 when they were fired from that institution for conducting controversial psychedelic drug research. In the purple haze aftermath, Alpert journeyed to India and found his guru Maharaj ji, who renamed him Ram Dass (“Servant of God”). Best known for his 1971 bestseller BE HERE NOW, which was a spiritual touchstone of the era, Ram Dass became an inspiration to people across the globe. Filmmaker Mickey Lemle—who has known his subject for more than twenty-five years—intersperses vivid archival footage from hippiedom’s glory days with intimate glimpses of Ram Dass today, as he continues to remake his life since being—in his words—“stroked” in 1997. Named by NEWSWEEK as one of the Top Five Non-Fiction Films of 2002, RAM DASS FIERCE GRACE is an engrossing, poignant meditation on spirituality, consciousness, healing and the unexpected grace of aging.
Producer/Director Mickey Lemle has been making feature films, television series and documentary specials since 1971. In 1977 he founded Lemle Pictures, Inc. His film and television works have been shown theatrically, on television and at film festivals around the world. He holds a B.A. from Brandeis University. Mickey served in the U.S. Peace Corps in Nepal and currently holds the position of Chairman of the Board of the Tibet Fund.
Lemle produced and directed an eight-part series for PBS in 1982 entitled MEDIA PROBES that garnered the Blue Ribbon at the American Film Festival, a CINE Golden Eagle and a prestigious DuPont Award. In 1989 he wrote, produced and directed the multi-award winning THE OTHER SIDE OF THE MOON, which was also broadcast on PBS. Lemle won another CINE Golden Eagle award in 1991 for OUR PLANET EARTH, a love poem to the planet commissioned by the United Nations.
In 1993, Lemle produced and directed the multi-award winning documentary COMPASSION IN EXILE: THE STORY OF THE 14TH DALAI LAMA. For this timely film, the Dalai Lama personally granted unprecedented access and cooperation. COMPASSION IN EXILE was broadcast on PBS and received numerous awards and honors, including two Emmy nominations for Best Director and Best Documentary, and the Grand Prize at the Earth/Peace Film Festival.
His 1996 film HASTEN SLOWLY: THE JOURNEY OF SIR LAURENS VAN DER POST weaves a tapestry of key moments in the life of an extraordinary writer, filmmaker, commando leader, statesman and anthropologist through his own intimate stories. HASTEN SLOWLY was awarded a Bronze Plaque at the Columbus International Film & Video Festival, and received a Golden Maile Audience Choice Award at the Hawaii International Film Festival.
Lemle’s other honors include the 1976 American Film Festival Blue Ribbon for A WOMAN’S PLACE IS IN THE HOUSE, a half hour portrait of Massachusetts State Representative Elaine Noble, and an Emmy nomination for editing P.O.W. and JIM, two programs in the RELIGIOUS AMERICA series. He also directed, shot and edited segments of the Emmy Award-winning series, ZOOM, and the Peabody Award-winning series, EYE-TO-EYE.
Appearances by Dr. Larry Brilliant, Wavy Gravy, Shana Roth, Caryl Sircus, Steve & Anita Isser, William Alpert, Dr. Ralph Metzner, Dr. Huston Smith, Rosemary Woodruff Leary, Bhagavan Das, Carolyn Ruth Chan, Lynne Oberlander, Krishna Das, KK Sah, Dr. Ming Qing Chu, Mark Matousek, Robert McDermott, Abby Reyes
Cinematographer Buddy Squires
Associate Producer Linda K. Moroney
Editors Aaron Vega, Mickey Lemle, Jacob Craycroft
Original Music Teese Gohl
Co-Producers Jessica Brackman, Buddy Squires
Sound Recordist Peter Bettendorf, John Zecca, P. D. Valson, Michael Becker
Assistant Camera John Chater, Jill Tufts, Deshraj, Ulli Bonnekamp
Production Manager (India) Nihal Mathur
Sound Editor Jacob Ribicoff Planet 10 Post
Re-Recording Mixer Dominick Tavella at Sound One Corp. NY
Additional Photography John Chater, Pramrod Mathur
Additional Editing Linnea Hamilton
Rights Clearance Elizabeth Klinck
Assistant Sound Editor Mike Poppelton
Foley Artists Aaron Lemle, Brian Vancho
Sound Effects Dennis Leonard, Mac Smith
Film to Tape Colorist John J. Dowdell
On-line Editor Greg Smith
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