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05 March, 2018

This summer sees The Man Who Built Peace – the Frank Buchman Story, brought to UK audiences. A special London premiere takes place on Thursday 7th June, followed by regional screenings in UK cities. The film is directed by Imad Karam,  the Executive Director of Initiatives of Change International. Imad has previously produced and directed the award winning film, Beyond Forgiving, from South Africa, and this latest venture has received similar successes. It was was among 26 films selected for the 2017 Illuminate Film Festival in Sedona, Arizona, which is the world’s premier film festival for conscious cinema. The festival programme manager described it as a highlight for many.

Despite his impact, Frank Buchman is not widely known. Yet his message and methods remain important and relevant for today. As Imad told Shahira Elaiza Wan Hassan in an interview last year, ‘My vision was to offer Frank Buchman back to the movement he initiated and to a world very much struggling with conflict and division. I hope viewers can find inspiration and relevance in their own lives and work. The film shows powerful stories of reconciliation, apology and forgiveness and that inspires and challenges people. Moreover, the film puts the responsibility and power back in the hands of the individual.It struck me that there is so much pain in people’s lives and the film seemed to have challenged and inspired them to reflect on what they can and should do.’

One member of the audience commented: ‘I so enjoyed the film, a tour de force, and I learned so much. The film and the people at the screening made it clearer than ever that we must continue to listen to each other, breathe, and balance. It is a good thing to have in this turbulent time.’

One of the key moments in the film is when we see Frank speak those famous words: 'There is enough in the world for everyone’s need, but not everyone’s greed. If everyone cares enough and everyone shares enough, everyone will have enough.’ Film has the capacity to inspire people to take the kinds of action that lead to a more caring world.

Imad explained, ‘Initiatives of Change has a history of making films that inspire hope and change in the most dire situations. Films can indeed act as a catalyst for peace and reconciliation by showing inspiring real life stories that demonstrate that it is possible to move beyond conflict and hatred towards healing and friendship.’

The film features documentary footage and interviews with many people who met and worked with Frank Buchman, but also remains resonant for today. 'As a filmmaker, I believe audiences derive and decode in their own way the messages expressed in the film and reflect them in and on their own lives,’ says Imad. I believe that Buchman’s message is very relevant to our times where our world is at a crossroads and there is so much pain, poverty and mistrust. Some of Buchman’s messages from the film that I feel are relevant to the world today.’

The London premiere takes place on June 7th 2018 at the Royal Geographic Society. Tickets are available here. To help facilitate the launch, a crowdfunding campaign is underway. Find out more here and donate here.