“The Fourth Noble Truth” Starring Harry Hamlin and Kristen Kerr to Play at Laemmle Theaters in June

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Meditation-Themed Indie Feature, Winner of Sonoma IFF’s Audience Award, Was Written/Directed by Gary T. McDonald and Produced by DKZ Films

“The Fourth Noble Truth” – winner of the Audience Award at the Sonoma International Film Fest in 2014 – is being released in Laemmle Theaters in Santa Monica this June. The film stars Harry Hamlin (“Mad Men”; wife Lisa Rinna of “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills”), Kristen Kerr (“Strictly Sexual”) & Richard Portnow (“The Sopranos”). Gary T. McDonald (“Rape/Crisis”) wrote and directed the feature, which was produced by David Kohner Zuckerman and Jillian Stein for Kohner Zuckerman’s DKZ Films (“Strictly Sexual,” “All I Want for Christmas”).

“The Fourth Noble Truth” is an unexpected romance, set intelligently against the backdrop of meditation. Drawing comparisons to films like “My Dinner with Andre,” and “The Sessions,” the story unfolds with sharply dramatized dialogue around the Buddha’s teachings of The Fourth Noble Truth, the goal of which is to show people a spiritual pathway to fulfillment and happiness.

“It was a wonderful audience in Sonoma,” says McDonald, an avid practitioner of meditation. "The time-honored teachings that inspired me to make the film and the story itself seem to have to have really struck a chord with a very diverse crowd of filmgoers. That thrilled me."

In the film, Hamlin plays an A-list movie star just busted for road rage named Aaron, who’s told by his wily lawyer (Portnow) to pursue meditation instruction with Rachel (Kerr), knowing this will impress the sentencing judge – a former student. Rather than adhere to the Rachel’s lessons, however, Aaron uses every bit of his intense charm to try and seduce her. Though Rachel’s boundaries are iron clad at first, it turns out she’s not immune to Aaron’s power, and her bourgeoning feelings for him threaten everything she’s trying to accomplish.

Using a unique storytelling device, the film plays out in eight chapters, during which Hamlin and Kerr trade in insightful wisdom while challenging one another’s life philosophies. In each, they purposefully or inadvertently show us one element of the Buddha’s Eight-Fold Path, which is “The Fourth Noble Truth.”

It’s now common knowledge that, in recent years, more and more Americans have embraced holistic living and Mindfulness Meditation. Indeed, stories are being published weekly citing meditation’s various benefits and popularity, including articles in the Washington Post, Huffington Post and “Forbes” just in the last month.

“I started practicing TM in 1975 and have always believed that meditation holds a key to happy and successful living,” Hamlin says. “Here's a film that sheds light on meditation and its undeniable benefits.”

McDonald’s first feature, “Rape/Crisis,” won the Grand Prix at the Mostra du Film d'Epernay in France and First Prize at the Athens International Film Fest. He also served as a producer on Errol Morris’ documentary “The Thin Blue Line,” and directed an adaptation of Jack London's “The Sea Wolf” before selling a spec to Fox and becoming a working screenwriter.

Producer Kohner Zuckerman comes from a family with impressive Hollywood credentials. His mother Katherine Kohner Zuckerman was the real-life “Gidget,” which inspired the famous books and movies by her father Frederick. Other members of the clan include famous agent Paul (recently honored at the Getty), producer Pancho, actress Susan, and filmmakers Paul & Chris Weitz. Among Kohner Zuckerman’s feature & TV credits, his “Strictly Sexual” is Hulu’s #1 watched movie of all time, and he owns a popular website for writers called VirtualPitchFest, which WGA members can use free of charge.

For more information on the film and its June release, please visit the “The Fourth Noble Truth” website. To arrange an interview with any of the actors, McDonald, or Kohner Zuckerman, please contact Scott Busby at 310-475-2914 or email scottb(at)thebusbygroup(dot)com.

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Eseel Borlasa
The Busby Group
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