BhakTV Launches New ISKCON Film in Sridham Mayapur

By Gita_nagari_das on Fri, 2009-11-13 12:25.
Vasudeva das recalls, “Nrsimhananda prabhu of ITV in LA is the one who prompted me to enter the contest. He and Siddhanta prabhu thought I might get lucky with a nomination in the ‘Religion and Philosophy’ category. There was no question of winning the actual award. So we simply took it as Krsna’s miracle.”

On Oct 31, 2009 in Sridham Mayapur at Srila Prabhupada’s Samadhi Auditorium a new documentary film series by Vasudeva dasa titled “NO SUFFERING ON SAFARI, The Bangladesh Experience” was premiered. This film follows a 2008 ISKCON preaching tour and pilgrimage to various towns and Vaishnava holy places in Bangladesh. The additional significance of the event was that it is the first new film released by BhakTV Productions in sixteen years.

The Premiere was well attended. It was presented by Vasudeva das, a resident of Mayapur from France, who created BhakTV twenty years ago, and became known for a series of documentaries he produced in the 1980s on India’s holy places and festivals. These films have since been distributed worldwide by ISKCON , notably the popular TIMELESS VILLAGE OF THE HIMALAYS. Many senior ISKCON members may fondly recall this old ITV classic, which, to our knowledge, remains the only ISKCON film ever to receive an award from a conventional film organization. The award was conferred by the American Video Conference in 1989, which sponsored a competition among professional documentary makers from across the entire USA. Furthermore, the award was presented by the American Film Institute, Billboard, and the Hollywood Reporter, three of the most prestigious film Institutions in America.

For the then budding film maker Vasudeva das to have his first serious production even nominated for an award had been quite unexpected. Beyond this, after the nominated film won first prize, more than a few incredulous eyebrows were raised while reading the good news in ISKCON World Review. Vasudeva das recalls, “Nrsimhananda prabhu of ITV in LA is the one who prompted me to enter the contest. He and Siddhanta prabhu thought I might get lucky with a nomination in the ‘Religion and Philosophy’ category. There was no question of winning the actual award. So we simply took it as Krsna’s miracle.”

As This year marks the 20th anniversary of TIMELESS VILLAGE FO THE HIMALAYS, the film was screened at the Premiere to introduce Vasudeva’s long awaited new film. Guests of honor and speakers were present: Umapati Maharaja opened the presentation, followed by MIHET Head Teacher Atul Krsna prabhu, and Mayapur Administrative Council (MAC) member Vaikuntha Nitai prabhu. Finally Jayaprataka Swami (JPS) Archives director Deva Gaura Hari prabhu spoke, mentioning his interest in distributing the film to Jayapataka Swami’s disciples worldwide, as it features extensive excerpts of His Holiness’s preaching work in Bangladesh.

This current release is the first of a three part series. It focuses on North-East Bangladesh, which includes footage of ISKCON’s Sylhet temple, Srivas Angan, Madhava Kund, Kulaura Farm, and the Comilla pandal program. The second release is scheduled to be edited by the Gaura Punima festival of 2010. It will focus on the Vaisnava tirthas of South-East Bangladesh, namely the birthplaces and bhajan kutirs of the famous brothers Munkunda and Vasudeva Datta, and of Pundarika Dham near Chittagong, which has now developed into a major ISKCON center in Bangladesh. Finally, the third release will take us on a boat cruise to the Jungles of Sunderband, home to the famed Royal Tiger of Bengal, and to the Sri Sri Rupa-Sanatana Goswami’s birthplaces near Jessore, also a major ISKCON complex.

NO SUFFERING ON SAFARI -PART ONE, can now be ordered as a fully packaged high-definition DVD from:

* JPS Archives, service@jpsarchives.com (for 1 to 10 copies)
* For wholesale orders, for the purpose of retail distribution at your local temple shop, please contact BhakTV, das1008@hotmail.com.

-TIMELESS VILLAGE OF THE HIMALAYAS is now also available from BhakTV in a digitally re-mastered, fully packaged DVD form.

Posted in In the News.