Irwin Luck with Meher Baba, 1960, on display at the book table.


Question: I don't know where to start, Irwin, but this has been two weeks and you've been here God knows how many hours a day, plus the days before, to say nothing of all the years and decades before. So, how do you feel and what do you want to share with the Baba world?

Irwin: Well, what I would like to share with everybody is how much people coming out of the theater after seeing the movie were touched, and the many different expressions that they gave about how they felt, because so many had never heard of Meher Baba before. They just saw something in the newspaper amongst the many ads that were advertising the film in the movie sections, and when they would come here, many didn't totally know what to expect.
            But then, looking at this fabulous art exhibition in which artists from all over the country participated, sending their most beautiful works here, that is something extraordinary in itself! This is an exhibit that I don't think has ever happened in any of the Baba events previously, close to a hundred works of art of all kinds, including collages and even pictures made out of fabric. It's really quite amazing and very beautiful and well done, very well done! (note: the art work was collected by Irwin and installed on large panels prepared by Sufism Reoriented.)
           This really did affect a lot of people! Now there have been Baba lovers that have come here who hadn't attended programs or been in touch with Meher Baba's writings, or just remembering Him, let's say, and it was just bringing a whole new freshness, a whole new breeze of Baba's Love back into their lives. They would express this, not only to me, but to the other people who were helping staff the theater and showing everyone around and serving whatever need there was.
          Of course there were also Baba-lovers here who have been so much with Baba for so many years. Just everybody had more and more of a Darshan, and more and more of the Presence and Love that Baba is giving out.
          This is no ordinary event. It definitely has affected the hearts and minds of everybody here, including myself! I mean, I've been with this now for a long time, as far as the movie goes, but I am very pleased with the way this whole thing came together and just what happened.

Question: The first week, numerically, the response started with a trickle, kind of. What were you feeling that first week or those first few days. Were you concerned?

Irwin: Well, it started off where there weren't so many people coming, and then things began to pick up fairly rapidly, and then it sort of slowed down in the first week again. But then, the second week, there just began to be more and more people coming. And I must say, the theater is quite large, and I would even have liked to see more people come, because there were still more seats for people to come and sit.
           But a lot of people did keep coming, and the quality of their expressions was really what touched me. After all, it doesn't matter that you fill up a theater and then everybody comes out and says how they didn't like it! In this case, we couldn't fill up the whole (note: 1,000-seat) theater in any one showing, but the viewers were all immensely touched!
           And then the word of mouth goes out. More and more people hear about it, and then they start coming. That's what I see happening.

Question: It seemed to me that you just chose to rely on Baba's Picture going out to so many people in so many big ads. Was that your strategy?

Irwin: Well, the ads themselves, when you look at them, have much information about who Meher Baba is. And the ads are all different. I mean, the theme of the movie, that it's a movie about Meher Baba, is the same. But the things that are said in the ads are different.
          For instance, one ad is "The Mystery of Meher Baba's Silence". That came out on Silence Day in two major publications, the San Francisco Chronicle and the San Jose Mercury News. These are dailies. Then it was in a number of the weeklies, with themes like "Does the Avatar Know Everything?" Just different types of statements that would cause people to become intrigued and want to see who this is.

Question: It seems to have paid off. Does this inspire you to want to put together this kind of event in other cities? Are plans starting to form in your mind?

Irwin: This event is a major event. It took a lot of work to put this together. I don't have a schedule at this moment of where it will be showing in other cities. But people have been asking me about that, and as theaters send us requests for shows, then naturally, we'll be able to do that.
           I doubt if we're going to have a fabulous art exhibition like in here because first of all, most theaters don't have a lobby this size. This is a 6,000 square-foot area.
          The other thing is, these are all from the personal art collections of individuals. To gather all this up and to present it was an amazing amount of work! I don't see where we'll be able to just move something like this from place to place.
         But the show itself, the movie, which is the most important thing, seeing Meher Baba and hearing His own quotes, is what I suspect will be going everywhere.

Question: One more question. Can we look forward to the movie coming out on DVD any time soon?

Irwin: It will definitely, eventually, be on DVD, but right now, that won't happen until the theater presentations are finished.

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