David Lynch does his TM bit in Bulgaria


    Award-winning cult director David Lynch came to Bulgaria this week to open a transcendental meditation university - with time out to attend Cinemania 2007, Sofia's biggest autumn film festival.

    Lynch's trip followed the visit of French director Patrice Leconte during Cinemania 2007 (http://kinomania.gbg.bg/2007), which will screen 74 films Nov. 2-29. Leconte's newest feature is Mon Meilleur Ami (My Best Friend) staring Daniel Auteuil.

    Lynch arrived as award-winning cult director (Mulholland Dr., Lost Highway, Blue Velvet, Twin Peaks, Wild at Heart, Elephant Man, Eraserhead) but mostly as founder of his transcendental meditation foundation (www.davidlynchfoundation.org).

    Before coming to Bulgaria, Lynch had already visited Ireland, UK, the Belgium, Finland, Denmark, Estonia, Lithuania and others from a total of 192 countries where he plans visits. The aim of his numerous international tours is to build and finance a network of "invincible universities," dedicated to anti-stress programs for contemporary students. The Scottish rock singer Donovan Leech accompanied the director to enrich the visit with some of his typical "mediation" songs.

    Lynch spoke of his autobiographical book, "Catching the Big Fish," both for the Bulgarian film and academic audiences.

    "I never approach a film with a ready-made idea," said the defender of consciousness-based education and creative meditation practice. "I always start with the fragments." The National Theatre and Film Academy solemnly pronounced Lynch doctor honoris causa.

    On Nov. 17, Cinemania 2007 is expecting another special guest. Famous international prosecutor Carla del Ponte will present her documentary Carla's List, supported by Swiss financing.