The Year Zero
During the winter solstice of 2012, according to the ancient calendar of the Maya Indians, the period of the Fourth Sun will end, with the beginning of the Fifth Sun,
According to many native American myths and prophecies we are now on the eve of global changes, – a period of great turmoil and worldwide natural disasters-, which will herald the dawning of an age of peace and harmony on Earth.
Indian elders and medicine (wo)men from all over the Americas heeded the call of 13th generation Mayan seer Wandering Wolf, to come together and prepare in a ritualistic way for this new era. This took place in 1997, right in the middle of the Amazon rainforest of Colombia .
For Wandering Wolf, an initiate in the ancient Maya Prophecies, this gathering marked the culmination of a personal odyssey through both the Americas, visiting all their Indian tribes to ask them to unite.
On this ceremonial gathering in the Amazon, cinematographer Wiek Lenssen met with Wandering Wolf, but also with Don Julian, a rainmaker and medicine man. Both are Mayans from Guatemala, Central America .
After the gathering Lenssen visited both shamans to film them in their home country Guatemala , a country torn apart by violence and dictators. There, they tell about their lives, their work, the sacred and millennia-old Mayan Calendar, and the messages the Mayan Prophecies hold for mankind.
A remarkable documentary, on the eve of great, global changes.
The Netherlands, 2001. 35mm kleur 85 min. Dialogues: Spanish Voice over: Dutch. DVD-version with English, Dutch & German subtitles
THE YEAR ZERO was made in co-production with one of Holland’s major production houses for creative documentaries: Jura Filmprodukties ( Jan Heijs, Ruud Monster, Wouter Snip). It encountered a very succesful cinema distribution in the Netherlands in 2002 en 2003. For many weeks in a row the film was displayed in the major cities of Holland. This feature length documentary film was distributed by Lava Filmdistributie Amsterdam. The Netherlands’ public broadcaster NCRV devoted a 25 ‘ special to the cinema release in Holland.
Currently the film is still being distributed on DVD by Wiek Lenssen Filmprodukties. A German version has been added to the English and Dutch subtitled versions.
‘ The Year Zero’ reached the finals in the competition of the world’s most prestigious documentary filmfestival IDFA 2001
In 2003 the film received the Special City Prize of Assisi (Italy)at the filmfestival of Trento/ Assisi, for the way in which the relation between man, religion and nature was visualized.
The film was also selected for the competition at the Dutch Filmfestival 2002, the Minneapolis International Film Festival USAin 2002 and the Umea International Filmfestival of Swedenin 2002.
Broadcasted in 2002 by the Greek national television ERT . At FRANCE 4 (2009) it was part of a documentary series on the subject of 2012