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PEACEFUL WARRIOR

About The Production
Inspired by true events, PEACEFUL WARRIOR is adapted from the best selling novel by Dan Millman, The Way of the Peaceful Warrior, and tells the unusual story of Millman's junior year in college as a world-class gymnast and Olympic hopeful and his miraculous transformation at the hands of an unlikely teacher. The spiritual memoir, which combines Millman's life story with fictional elements, became a cult word-of-mouth phenomenon upon its publication in 1980 as part of the then emerging world of Personal Growth literature and has since inspired millions of readers in over 30 languages. In a society polarized by politics and beliefs where both sides chase success at any costs, this film attempts to reach the people left in the middle who are searching for an alternative.

"In a society polarized by politics and beliefs where both sides chase success at any costs, this film attempts to reach the people left in the middle who are searching for an alternative,” says Dan Millman, author of the book. "I wanted to remind people of that which we all know but occasionally lose sight of. And now, 25 years after the first publication of this book, this story seems to speak to a cultural and spiritual movement that is finally reaching some critical mass.”

PEACEFUL WARRIOR marks a decades-long labor of love for its producers, director and cast. Like many of Millman's readers, producer Mark Amin remembers the first time he discovered The Way of the Peaceful Warrior. "I was at a retreat by the ocean in Big Sur and I saw the book sitting on the coffee table,” he recalls. "I read the first ten, twenty pages and I was hooked. I didn't get up again until I was finished. It stayed with me until I finally tracked down the rights and found out they were licensed by David Welch.”

Producer David Welch had already been on the project for a decade before Amin contacted him. "This started nineteen years ago when my own Socrates gave me the book. It was as if a light went on,” says Welch. "Dan's quest is to go from being externally driven to being internally driven. That was an important message for me, and I felt it would make a wonderful film.”

"The film is appealing because it's about a young man trying to answer the very big question of how to lead a meaningful life,” adds producer Cami Winikoff. "It's hard to know what will make you happy when you have so much, and that's Dan's predicament in the beginning of the film.”

Like Amin and Welch, director Victor Salva was profoundly affected by the Millman's book. "This book has been a guiding light for me,” said Salva. Upon learning of Salva's personal interest in the project, Amin and his producing partners were committed to making the film with Salva at the helm. "Victor is a very talented filmmaker,” says producer Robin Schorr. "He had the entire movie of PEACEFUL WARRIOR in his head before he shot one scene. He's made it a stately, classic, classy, anamorphic, widescreen American movie.”

After the commercial success of JEEPERS CREEPERS and JEEPERS CREEPERS 2, Salva was eager to direct a dramatic character-driven story. " This film is hard to categorize, which is great,” says the director. " It has the coat of a sports film, but inside is a parable about how we've been conditioned to live our lives. Dan is this young, arrogant kid running into a wall of reality, and Socrates has different ideas – he wants him to keep his mind in the present. It's a sports film with a beautiful philosophy.”

Like the filmmakers, leading man Nick Nolte had been impressed by The Way of the Peaceful Warrior years before production began. "I've known this book since the early 1980s,” explains Nolte. "I'd gone through the 1960s, the peace movement, civil rights, but no one had written about spiritual discovery in a novel, in a readable form. We don't teach peace. We ha

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