Samsara official press releases

Last updated by Darren on 04 July 2009

Many thanks to Mark Magidson (producer of Baraka, Samsara and Chronos) for the following Samsara press releases.

Magidson Films - 20-June-2007

Samsara is a Tibetan word that means “the ever turning wheel of life, a concept both intimate and vast, obvious and oblique, the perfect subject for filmmakers Mark Magidson and Ron Fricke who have awed us with exquisite images of the mundane; filmmakers with an uncanny ability to reveal the elusive current of interconnection that runs through the Universe and our lives.

Both philosophically and technically, Samsara will build on the team’s earlier work. Expanding on the themes of interconnection and transcendence which they developed in Baraka (1992), Samsara will focus on the cycle of Birth, Death and Rebirth, from the perspectives of many cultures. Neither a traditional documentary, nor a travelogue, Samsara will take the form of a nonverbal, guided meditation that will transform viewers in countries around the world, as they are swept along on a journey of the soul. Through powerful images, the film will illuminate the links between humanity and the rest of nature, showing how our life cycle mirrors the rhythm of the planet. Samsara will be part of a 21st Century mythology, revealing parts of our imperilled planet never before photographed. It will combine original and indigenous music with dance as well as other contemporary art forms.

Fricke and Magidson firmly believe that nonverbal films must live up to the standard of great still photography, which reveals the essence of a subject, not just the physical presence, but the inner workings as well. In order to accomplish this goal, they rely on the careful balance of three elements: cinematography, editing and music. To achieve this synthesis, the musical score for Samsara will be commensurate with the film techniques, bringing a vastly diverse musical component to the film. Approximately 15 to 20 minutes of thematic score will be composed and woven into original music from accomplished International artists, the carefully coordinated score matching the imagery in sophistication and cultural integrity.

With a team that has collaborated for over 20 years, Samsara will be filmed in 20 to 25 countries. Director/Cinematographer Ron Fricke will photograph in 70mm film using both standard frame rates and a motion control time-lapse camera designed specifically for this project. This camera system will allow him to shift perspectives to reveal extraordinary views of ordinary scenes. The film elements will be then be scanned to a digital intermediate format. Effects produced in this manner will be stunning without appearing artificial. Samsara will be the ultimate showpiece for both the HD format and high-resolution digital projection, as well as standard film projection.

After the fantastic and time proven response to Baraka (Variety declared it a ‘Masterpiece” and the Hollywood Reporter a ‘riveting” experience), Magidson and Fricke are confident that world audiences are ready for films with a life-affirming message. They aim to take the universally understood, nonverbal genre to new heights; a global vision for a global audience.

Magidson Films - 5-May-2007

Fifteen years after BARAKA wowed audiences across the globe, its sequel SAMSARA has been set in motion. Released in 1992, the original BARAKA was an epic film that explored the evolution of earth and man. Weaving together image, sound, and music in an exploration of nature and humanity BARAKA used the exquisite 70MM film format to present a kaleidoscope of stunning images. Producer Mark Magidson and director-cinematographer Ron Fricke traveled 24 countries on six continents to amass footage of man’s dramatic – and often detrimental – collision with his surroundings. BARAKA abandoned a traditional narrative approach in favor of one that transcended language and cultural barriers in order to become a breathtaking non-verbal masterpiece and critical success, and has enjoyed a sustained cult like following as a DVD release. “Baraka,” an ancient Sufi word, translates to “breath of life.”

SAMSARA, the BARAKA sequel, will continue where its predecessor left off, taking a deeper look, in far flung locations, at the cyclical interconnectedness of our world, exploring the themes of birth, death, and rebirth, and presenting it once again without dialogue in stunning 70MM. Ron Fricke returns to shoot and direct.. Mark Magidson is producing, again through his Los Angeles based production company, Magidson Films, Inc. “Samsara” is a Sanskrit word meaning “cyclic existence.”

BARAKA will also be re-released later this year through MPI Home Video in a special edition DVD both in standard def and HD (release date to be determined).

RELEASE IT OR GIVE US A DATE ALREADY!! You're arousing attachment and suffering in me, Mr. Fricke and team. This will be one of the few movies I'll ever buy.

Ok Mr Ron Fricke and Mr Mark Magidson, enough is enough!....WHATS the deal?? We have been waiting for years for completion and release of Samsara so... WHY are you guys holding out on us??...and WHEN do we get a public release??...

If your intention was to give hundreds of thousands of fans cinematic blue balls, then you have succeeded. Please release this film, my belly hurts.

The public release is likely to be in the Spring 2012.

I caught it at the Toronto fest in Sept with a few friends and we've been all itching to see it again! And get everyone else on it - PLEASE release already!

When will it be release for the general public. When can I see it in Montreal???

There is no information yet.

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Stood in line yesterday to see Samsara in Toronto. Sat in the second to front row. Was Projected in 4k.

And... wow.

Glad you liked it.
I also saw it in 4K at Toronto. Was a amazing experience. I have though about it everyday since.
I am hoping it comes to London to watch it again, and can't wait for the Blu-Ray.

At last....

Samsara to be released next month!!

How exciting - although i have enjoyed the mystery and suspense too.

I hope it screens at Manchester's IMAX to make the most of Fricke's work.

I have waited so long for this!!! Fantastic!

every day I wait for Samsara

Still waiting for Samsara it's 2011 c'mon boys, give us an update!

2011 is half over. So just a half left. We're almost there. Keep up the good work guys. I love the Baraka Blu-Ray.

Waiting for Samsara almost ten years...and counting...

such a beautiful document of humanity....
cinematography is pure genius....looking forward to see better in for life now....

not till 2010 :( tho Chronos is out on blu ray now :)

Wow, this is certainly today's bit of excellent news.
I was really starting to worry that Samsara would be in pre-production forever. I am certain that it will take a while for the finished film to reach theatre screens, but once it does, I will be first in line.

As for the remastered Baraka dvd, I am looking forward to that one as well. Much as I love the movie, I think the current dvd leaves something to be desired, both when it comes to the visual transfer (the audio is fine) and the practically non-existing extras. On smaller screens it still looks fine, but when seen via a projector, there is certainly room for improvement. Should make fine HD demo material!

One question:

BluRay DVD or HD DVD?
Or both? (or maybe a hybrid disc)?

My personal preference between the two would be BluRay, and anyway, haven't Blockbuster USA recently decided to only carry BluRay (and not HD DVD) in their stores? If so, BluRay would be the smart choice to ensure the re-release in HD gets as much distribution as possible... ;)


What the Heck!. I thought we were waiting on the theatrical release of Samsara (shooting was primarily done) and now Im reading they are just starting to shoot film footage?!? UGH..Is it too late to sign up Michael Stearns to do the music instead of Philip Glass?

Great news about Baraka though. I hope it's done on Blu-Ray and they use a BD-50!

I read with anticipation about the re-release of Baraka in High definition, allready owing Baraka in standard definition I can appreciate what it would be like in High def, my question is: will it be released on the Blueray format or Hd dvd and will it be released on region 2 for use in the UK

Trio Mr.Fricke, Mr.Stearns, Mr.Madgison has a dedicated following back here in Oslo.
Baraka is one of the few works of contemporary art that dares to take the human being
seriously - life, death, spirituality, relationship with the planet - and we are eager to be
presented with yet a spectacular opportunity to be reconnected with ourselves and
ultimately, life it all and everything - for real. Baraka from up north. HSH

Fantastic, excellent, awesome. I am a big fan of Baraka and how it manages to make you aware of your place in the world, and from the sounds of things Samsara is going to do exactly that again, albeit from a slightly different angle. If Jacob is the first in line, I'll be right behind him...

As regards Baraka being re-released, I was always disappointed that there were some scenes that no matter how hard I tried I could never figure out nor find out where they were shot. What I'm hoping for is that the re-release will have a feature that will allow you find out so that, the next time I have the money to go travelling/have a holiday, I can attempt to visit some of the most beautiful scenery and breathtaking architecture in the world. If this isn't already planned, is there any chance that it isn't too late to include it? Please? That said, if anyone out there has a list that can be cross-referenced to the film please can someone guide me to it...

Fantasic news, I look forward to seeing Samsara, we have been patiently waiting, and watching steadily deteriorating prints of Baraka at old cinemas. The time is ripe for this film.

Based on the previous and undeniable success of Baraka, I am suprised its taken this long to see this production come to fruition.

Just wanted to say that baraka, was an excellent film, and I truley appreciate all the dedication and time that must have gone into making the film. I am thrilled that another one is one the way! I brought that movie to school to show to my teacher, and she ended up having us do a series of questions, together worth 80 marks on the movie and how we respond to it.
Anyway great movie, with the emfasis on how it is avialiable to anyone in the world because you don't need to know a certain language to understand it!
Well done,


I am very excited by the sound of samsara, baraka is an incredible film which incaptulates like no other. I recently watched Chronos and was equally impressed by Rons camera work and the editing, amazing hearing the stories on the making of! It would be great to see a sample clip or tralier of the upcoming film "Samsara", I have searched the web, but there is nothing. Is Samsara having a theatrical release? Keep me posted, all the best with all guys! your doing great!

Due to the importance of clean energy, will the film focus on the sun and its capability of powering the earth? Global warming will end our sustainability on earth unless the sun can rescue us all. Samsara should continue to show the evolution of earth and man via solar projects worldwide, working in conjunction with different cultures. The evolution of man in the third world needs the sun's energy for knowledge via computers and the internet, refrigeration of vaccines, lighting and learning.
I hope Mark and Ron will see the light. my best, Sam...

Working in Samsara production and with Magidson crew was the highlight of my 7 years experience in film production. Now I can Die happy!! Thanks to Mark, Ron, Myles, JC and Sidartha for the opportunity to work with you in Jordan and Turkey.
Ghassan Salti

Do you know any information about the re-release? Is there already a new version as it's mentioned in the article, or there's only the 2001 release yet, which is in the Baraka/Chronos Box Set?
I wanted to order the Box Set, but if a newer version is expectable, I'll wait for it...


Having bought the Blu-Ray release of BARAKA a few days ago, I have just one question. How soon will I be able to purchase my own copy of SAMSARA on Blu-Ray? If I am certain of anything, I'm sure it won't be soon enough!

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