New Film About the Dalai Lama to be Released in July

[poster with The Last Dalai Lama? in red type left of a black and white close up of an elderly man's head, against a dark background]The Last Dalai Lama?, the new film by director Mickey Lemle (Ram Dass Fierce Grace, Compassion In Exile), will open in four San Francisco Bay Area theaters on July 7. The announcement came at the Los Angeles premiere of the film held at IBFF 2017 LA at the Writers Guild Theater.

The participating theaters are the Smith Rafael Film Center in San Rafael (where a special opening event will be held on the Dalai Lama’s birthday, July 6, with director Mickey Lemle attending, along with Tibetan musician Tsering Dorjee Bawa performing), the Elmwood Cinema in Berkeley, the Roxie Theater in San Francisco, and the Rialto Sebastopol in Sebastopol. Other bookings around the country are expected to be announced shortly.

The film is a comprehensive update of the director’s groundbreaking Compassion in Exile (1991) profile of the Dalai Lama, with an intimate look at the enduring good humor and gentle wisdom of His Holiness, now eighty-one. Addressing his own death, the Dalai Lama considers the challenges of the prospect of his reincarnation, with Tibet still under Chinese control; his urgency and dedication come through powerfully. The Last Dalai Lama? was filmed on location in India and the US, and features vivid archival footage, with an original score by Philip Glass and Tenzin Choegyal.

The Last Dalai Lama? trailer.