Sunday, October 01, 2006

Fwd: Golden Road

Premier of Golden Road Documentary

Provo, UT— Brigham Young University and Timpanogos Entertainment announce the premier of Golden Road, a documentary film by the acclaimed producer Peter Johnson, on November 9th at the Washington D.C. Temple Visitors Center.

Golden Road is about the people and places that created and gave shape to one of the most important economic highways in the ancient world, the fabled Incense Trail.

Filmed on location in Oman, Yemen, Jordan and Israel, and resting on the most recent scholarship, the film explores the story of extraordinary courage and skill, of high-level cooperation and foresight.

"The film is set against the spectacular backdrop of Arabia," said S. Kent Brown, Executive Producer and Academic Director of the film. "More than any other attempt, it succeeds better at giving audiences access to this area. It brings people inside this trek across the ancient trail."

The film offers a first-hand look at the trade, politics and diplomacy of the Golden Road which brought untold riches to those entrepreneurial enough to overcome the treacherous Arabian desert, the threat of marauders, and the plodding pace of desert caravans.

After years of research on this ancient world, filming was set to begin in the Republic of Yemen in 2000, the country located in the southern part of the Arabian Peninsula. It is bordered on the north by Saudi Arabia and on the south by the Indian Ocean. However, in the final production meeting, just before departure for Yemen, news arrived of the bombing of the USS Cole in the Port of Aden, the country's main port. The filming team had to postpone plans and shelve preparations.

Determined to continue the project, Brown and Peter Johnson, the director and producer of the film, organized a filming trip for the next year, traveling to Yemen in September 2001. The second day in the country was September 11. Team members watched in horror the television images of events in New York and Washington, D.C. After consulting government authorities, they decided to keep working rather than trying to find an early flight out of the country.

It would be another three years before the filming crew would return to the Middle East, this time to film in Oman where the Incense Trail began and in Jordan and Israel where the Trail had almost run its overland course. In the end, said Brown, "we were able to accomplish what we set out to accomplish."

The film is a joint production of The Foundation for Ancient Research and Mormon Studies at Brigham Young University and Timpanogos Entertainment. Music is by Arlen Card and Nicholas J. Gasdik. The film is edited by Adam Lisonbee, with director of photography Brian Wilcox. The executive producers are S. Kent Brown and Noel B. Reynolds, with producer and director Peter Johnson.

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