ILLUMINATE Announces Nine World Premieres for 2017

Sedona, Arizona – April 24, 2017 – Nine documentary films are slated to make their world debuts at the Illuminate Film Festival May 31- June 4 in Sedona, Arizona.

"It's a testament to the universal quest for connection, and why we created the festival as a home and launching platform for conscious films," said ILLUMINATE Executive Director Danette Wolpert. "We're honored that a growing number of films choose to show here before anywhere else."

World premieres have more than doubled since the festival's inaugural installment in 2014. Attendance is also on the rise, having increased 45% every year since inception, with this year's attendance expected to be over 7000.

Part of a world-class film line-up, the nine world premiers join a festival gaining increasing recognition not only for the quality and intent of its films, but also as a "destination festival" and conscious experience in itself. ILLUMINATE was recently selected by The Huffington Post as a "top festival to revitalize the soul."

According to Wolpert, ILLUMINATE brings together the planet's most talented conscious filmmakers, producers and thought leaders to celebrate stories and inspire the people who attend. "It's really about the expansion of humanity in one sacred space," she says.

Here are the world premiere films showing at this year's ILLUMINATE Film Festival. Prepare to expand.

Hare Krishna! The Mantra, the Movement and Swami Who Started It All follows the arrival of Krishna consciousness in the US, carried over from India in the heart of His Divine Grace AC Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, known to many simply as Sri Prabupad. We watch Sri Prabupad travel from Bengal to New York in steerage class of an Indian cargo vessel, suffer a heart attack along the way, and get deposited penniless in New York City during one of the coldest winters on record. Here, after more winters of despair, Sri Prabuphad won a way into the hearts of youth seeking answers by sharing his love of Krishna, home cooked meals, and japa, better known as the Hare Krishna chant. Thrust into the raging counterculture of the East Village Sri Prabupad sparked a new kind of revolution, all from a simple storefront whose name, significantly enough, was never changed from "Timeless Gifts." Krishna consciousness ignited a spiritual movement throughout the west, helped along by rock and roll legends like George Harrison and an army of books translated into English by Sri Prabupad late into the night. Real footage and interviews with devotees bring the struggle and triumph of the man who made Hare Krishna a household word to life.

MANTRA — Sounds into Silence shares the stories of everyday people in the US healing through kirtan: call-and-response chanting of sacred mantra or sacred songs. An ancient practice with roots in India, kirtan has been introduced into western popular consciousness by performers like Deva Premal, Krishna Das, Jai Uttal, and Snatam Kaur. At the same time, this lost art is also being rediscovered by modern Hindus and Sikhs. The film itself works the power of mantra on the viewer. By the end, the sound has taken mind with it into silence and the transformative power of kirtan to open the collective heart revealed.

SuperSapiens — As artificial intelligence rapidly blurs the boundaries between man and machine, we face an astonishing question: are we witnessing the rise of a new human species? SuperSapiens enters a new millennial world where the concept of a collective consciousness created through technology is widely embraced. It foreshadows the end of Homo sapiens and heralds the rise of the mind, bringing with it the birth of a species, Super sapiens.

American Visionary: The Story of Barbara Marx Hubbard — "How can we navigate through our global crises and blossom into a future that is equal to our human potential?" asks Barbara Marx Hubbard, known as the mother of conscious evolution. Hubbard believes humanity is on the brink of radical advancement. Authors Jack Canfield, Neale Donald Walsch and more than forty fellow visionaries join Hubbard in this film as they examine what a positive future might look like and how we could get there

HEAL — follows three people on actual high-stakes healing journeys to find out what works and why. We are taken on a scientific and spiritual journey by Dr. Michael Beckwith, Marianne Williamson, Dr. Joseph Dispenza, Deepak Chopra, Anita Moorjani, Dr. Bruce Lipton, Anthony William the "Medical Medium", Gregg Braden and several others. Discover how changing one's perceptions can help the body heal itself from any disease.

The Man Who Built Peace — You may never have heard of him. But Frank Buchman changed the world. Following an experience of personal suffering and transformation, he helped shape the course of history by uniting the bitterest enemies of World War II. Discover how to apply this path to yourself in today's politically charged climate. This film captures his life and legacy and maybe, just maybe, will bring peace to you. 

Global Spirit: Earth Wisdom for a World in Crisis — Woven through compelling portraits of indigenous leaders, Earth Wisdom follows the Lakota Sioux's non-violent resistance at Standing Rock Reservation. Through the unique prism of indigenous cosmologies and native perspectives from all continents, this film weaves a vivid contrast between the bureaucratic, slow-moving "recognition" of indigenous peoples by the United Nations, and the political immediacy of the Dakota Access Pipeline protest movement.

Magic Pills — After being framed by the media, filmmaker and homeopath Ananda More crisscrosses the world to meet with scientists, practitioners, and patients to learn whether homeopathy is science-based or is an elaborate placebo that cons millions and endangers lives.

"Yoga In Sedona" — Witness the magnificence of Sedona's spectacular red rocks in a whole new light in this inspirational film depicting the spiritual essence of Sedona melded with the practice of yoga. Yoga photographer and filmmaker Wari Om expands the light of yoga around the world with his eye for nature, human grace and spirituality.

Major sponsors include: Natural Action Technologies, ChocolaTree, Sedona Chamber of Commerce, Science of Mind Magazine, Collective Evolution, Conscious Life News, The Collective, Tlaquepaque Arts & Crafts Village, Sedona Real, and The Lodge at Sedona.

ILLUMINATE Film Festival, the world's premier film festival for conscious cinema will be held May 31-June 4, 2017 at the Sedona Performing Arts Center, the Mary D. Fisher Theater and The Collective.

Contact: Morgan Richmond (928) 421-1108