Acclaimed Hollywood star Richard Gere, the most high profile disciple of Tibet's exile leader Dalai Lama, has selected outdoor locations in Dharamsala and Ladakh to shoot his movie, after he was reportedly denied permission to film in Chinese controlled Tibetan Autonomous Region. Richard Gere is follower of Dalai Lama and since two decades has been advocating Human Rights in Tibet. Tibetans close to Gere in Dharamsala said Hollywood actor had been working on the planned movie for almost last five years.
"Though not much is known but the movie, it is certainly based on the theme which is very close to Richard's heart" said Lobsang Wangyal, Director of Miss Tibet Pageant, who is also a friend of Gere.
According to Wangyal, story of the movie revolves around Tibet and Buddhism. Gere has selected Bollywood's Rajiv Khinchi to choreograph the movie, which is likely to be filmed in Buddhist dominated Leh in Jammu and Kashmir.
The shooting would begin next month. Gere has also contacted Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts for engaing a folk artist for the Tibetan dance sequence in his film.
Those associated with Richard Gere says that Hollywood Star could make his usual unscheduled visit to Dharamsala to select some locations in the hill town, the exile home of Dalai Lama for the past half a century. Dalai Lama, who escaped from Lhasa in 1959 had chose to settle in Dharamsala after spending a year in Mussorie.
Gere is a co-founder of the Tibet House, creator of The Gere Foundation, and he is Chairman of the Board of Directors for the International Campaign for Tibet. Gere has been sponsoring welfare programs for Tibetan living in Dharamsala and other Tibetan settlement in India.
Three years ago, Gere when visited the Dalai Lama had offered monetary support to repair a shorter vehicular road leading to Mcleodganj but the state government declined the assistance. The road has now been repaired by the state government.
Richard Gere has been visting Dharamsala since the late 80's when he arrived in the hill town for the forst time along with Goldie Hawn to meet Dalai Lama.