A screenplay for a feature film. In 1904 Francis Younghusband led a band of 10,000 into Tibet with unexpected consequences. Thousands of unarmed Tibetans were sent to defend their country, a mistaken volley resulted in thousands of deaths. The Tibetans fought valiantly, and nearly defeated the British regiment, resulting in the highest elevation of a battlefield in world history. Ultimately, Younghusband made it to Lhasa to negotiate a treaty, but the 13th Dalai Lama had fled. Back in London news of his massacre forced the UK to repudiate his treaty, which would have recognized Tibet for the world. As Younghusband left, he was given a statue of Buddha and asked to think fondly of the people he was leaving behind; it transformed him completely - he vowed to never pick up another gun, and upon his return to London created the "Council of World Religions." The statue rode upon his casket at his funeral. This script, after years of research, attempts to tell both sides of the story - the Tibetans and the British, against the backdrop of the Great Game, and the work of Rudyard Kipling ("Kim") whose prose inspired so many British explorers. This is a true story with a horrific outcome - however, the Chinese saw the British invasion as weakness, they invaded a few years later, but were ultimately repelled by the 13th Dalai Lama - this time arming his troops. Tibet stayed free until the Communist soldiers returned in 1949, and then ultimately forced the 14th Dalai Lama to flee into exile in 1959. This is a piece of history that I personally experience in Tibet, when the driver of our car pulled over to the side of the road and began to weep. I asked him what the problem was, and he said "3000 of my fellow Tibetans were massacred on this spot by the British in 1906." I was there a hundred years later - have discovered the statue of Buddha in the Geographic Society museum in London. I know how difficult it would be politically to tell this story in today's political and financial climate - so I am publishing it here so that people can read the story as I envisioned it. On the big screen. Only a little smaller. Enjoy. RM
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|Age Range:||18 Years|
About the Author
Richard Martini (born March 12, 1955) is an award-winning American film director, producer, screenwriter and free lance journalist. He graduated Magna Cum Laude from Boston University with a degree in Humanities, attended USC Film School and is a 2008 graduate of the Master of Professional Writing Program at USC. Martini grew up in Northbrook, Illinois. His first documentary film "Special Olympians" won the 1980 Mexico City International Film Festival. He then made his feature film directorial debut with the “quintessential 80’s comedy” (TNT) "You Can't Hurry Love," which featured the debut of Bridget Fonda. Martini was a Humanities Major at Boston University, attended USC Film School. His student short film "Lost Angels" was the film debut of fellow Chicago native Daryl Hannah. Martini left USC to work for writer/director Robert Towne ("Chinatown," "Ask The Dust") where he did everything from typing up Towne’s notes to walking Towne's Oscar nominated dog Hira. (Hira has the distinction of being the only dog ever nominated in the writing category; when Towne's script for "Greystoke" was nominated, he used the pseudonym P.H. Vazak, his dog's official name). It was after that Martini wrote his first feature “My Champion” which starred Christopher (son of Robert) Mitchum and Yoko Shimada (Shogun). He then wrote the Charlie Sheen comedy “Three For the Road” for Vista Films. Martini directed a comedy short “Video Valentino” shot by fellow USC alum John Schwartzman (DP of “Seabiscuit”) and produced by Jonathan D. Krane. The short led to a deal with Vestron Pictures, where he made "You Can’t Hurry Love" starring Bridget Fonda, Charles Grodin and Kristy McNichol based on the short. Martini then co-wrote and directed two films for Producer Jonathan D. Krane ("Look Who's Talking", "Face/Off"): Chicago-set Faustian comedy Limit Up," starring Nancy Allen and blues icon Ray Charles, and "Point of Betrayal," starring Dina Merrill, Rod Taylor and Rebecca Broussard. Martini then co-wrote and directed "Cannes Man" (also released as "Con Man" at Netflix) starring Francesco Quinn and Seymour Cassel, with appearances by Johnny Depp and the "cast of characters who inhabit the film festival each year." Martini wrote and directed the Dogme 95 film "Camera – Dogme #15," shot on digital video; it follows the life of a video camera around the world. He's also directed documentaries; "Tibetan Refugee" explores the Tibetan community in Dharamsala, "White City/Windy City" explores the relationship between Chicago and Casablanca in the Eisenhower "Sister Cities" program, and "Journey Into Tibet", follows Buddhist scholar and author Robert Thurman on a sacred journey around Mt. Kailash in Western Tibet. He co-wrote and produced “My Bollywood Bride” starring Jason Lewis and Kashmera Shah (released as "My Faraway Bride.") Among Martini’s television credits include producing segments and appearing on the award-winning “Charles Grodin Show” on CNBC and writing an upcoming miniseries for HBO about the notorious House of Medici. He's also written freelance articles for Variety, Premiere, Inc.com, edited and wrote Epicurean Rendezvous' "Best 100 Restaurants in Los Angeles" and appeared in USA Today as a commentator about "American Idol." He also contributed a chapter to Charles Grodin's book "If I Only Knew Then... Learning from our mistakes." (Springboard Press.) He worked on the films "Amelia" and "Salt" as a digital media curator, pioneering a method of previsualizing a film online, film director Phillip Noyce hired him to work on both films. As an actor, he's made numerous appearances in bit parts in various films, including "Salt" as the driver who drives Angelina Jolie out of North Korea. Based on his documentary about life between lives regression and Michael Newton's work, he's published his first book on Kindle, "Flipside: A Tourist's Guide on How To Navigate the Afterlife." He's taught film directing at Loyola Marymount University, the Maine Media Workshops and the John Felice Rome Center. He's married and has two children, lives in Santa Monica, California.