For twenty years, documentary filmmaker Jennifer Fox has been following the high Tibetan master, Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche and his Italian-born son Yeshi, with her camera. The result is an astounding feature-length documentary, MY REINCARNATION, that tells the compelling inside story of one of the last Rinpoche's to be trained in Tibet and his son's stubborn reluctance to follow in his father's footsteps. Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche escaped Tibet in 1959 and settled in Italy, where he married and had two children, of which Yeshi was the first. Yeshi was recognized as a famous spiritual master, who died after the Chinese invaded Tibet. Yeshi grew up in Italy and never wanted to have anything to do with this legacy. He didn't want to be a Teacher like his father, nor did he want to return to Tibet and the monastery of his reincarnation, to meet the students waiting for him since his birth. Instead, he dreamed of a normal life, away from the hoards of devoted students that always surrounded his father. The conflict of father and son combine to make a universal drama that taps into the classic narrative of inheritance. As the story grows, we see a young man mature from 18 years old to 38 years old; and a father age from his 50 year-old prime to 70 years old and illness. But as time progresses, both father and son begin to change, giving MY REINCARNATION both scope and drama.
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Jennifer Fox Director
Jennifer Fox is an internationally acclaimed director, producer, camera-woman and educator. Her first film, BEIRUT: THE LAST HOME MOVIE was released theatrically in seven countries and broadcast in twenty and won seven international awards, including Best Documentary Film and Best Cinematography at the 1988 Sundance Film Festival and Best Documentary at the 1988 Cinema Du Reel Festival, Paris. She produced and directed the groundbreaking ten-hour PBS/ BBC/ ARTE series AN AMERICAN LOVE STORY, which received a Gracie Award for Best Television Series and was named ”One of the Top Ten Television Series of 1999” by The New York Times and five major American papers. Her last work, the cutting edge, six-part, FLYING CONFESSIONS OF A FREE WOMAN was made through a unique Danish co-production, funded by the Danish Film Institute, TV-2 Denmark, BBC, ARTE, YLE-1, SBS, SVT, ICON & Humanist Channels Netherlands, the Sundance Channel, and a Creative Capital Grant. FLYING premiered at the In-ternational Documentary Film Festival in Amsterdam (IDFA) in 2006 and the Sundance Film Festival in 2007 and did a 20-city theatrical tour in North America before airing on the BBC, SVT, TV-2, YLE, SBS, and the Sundance Channel in 2008. Jennifer has Executive Produced many films including: LOVE & DIANE; ON THE ROPES; DOUBLE EXPOSURE; PROJECT TEN: REAL STORIES FROM A FREE SOUTH AFRICA; COWBOYS, LAWYERS AND INDIANS; and ABSOLUTELY SAFE? While Jennifer has always engaged in long-term observation, her current twenty year work, RINPOCHE, exceeds all others. To date, the film has been funded by the Dutch Buddhist Television Network (BOS) and is a co-production with ARTE and Swiss TV, with pre-sales to Swedish and Finish television. It has been funded by Impact Partners and grants from the Hartley Film Foundation and the GDF Foundation as well as private donations. Jennifer lectures and teaches documentary filmmaking and producing around the world.
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Festivals & Awards
International Documentary Festival Amsterdam 2010
Top 20 Audience Award
Hot Docs Film Festival 2011
Hamptons International Film Festival 2011
“MY REINCARNATION takes the classic father-son story to a magnificent new level, all the more amazing because it offers a front-row seat at the actual transformation of a human being.”
-The Wall Street Journal
“…A graceful and moving report of a father and a son learning to understand one another better.”
“Jennifer Fox’s remarkable documentary MY REINCARNATION follows one such individual over the course of 20 years, only to find that destiny will have its way.”
-The New York Times
The outreach campaign of MY REINCARNATION hopes to promote dialogue and debate on the many topics raised in the film, including religion, identity, spirituality, indigenous culture, Tibetan Buddhism, death and dying, family, and more. More resources are available on the film's website!
MY REINCARNATION Discussion Guide
Use this guide to promote exploration of the issues raised by the film.
The mission of ASIA is to safeguard the culture and the sustainable development of ethnic minorities of Asia, with particular regard to the Himalayan area.
Snow Lion Publications
Rigpa is an international network of meditation centers and groups under the guidance of Sogyal Rinpoche, author of the Tibetan Book of Living and Dying.
Campaigns for an end to the Chinese occupation of Tibet and for the Tibetans’ human rights to be respected.