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Julian Lennon, the first-born son of late Beatles legend John Lennon and his late first spouse, Cynthia Powell Lennon, grew up with the weighty information that his father modified the panorama of in style music ceaselessly. His mom was a singer, songwriter and artist in her personal proper who additionally went on to make her mark on each British and American in style tradition. Julian’s personal music profession has delivered superbly composed and vocalized hits like Too Late For Goodbyes, Valotte and Saltwater, an impassioned music about people’ destruction to our planet. Julian Lennon has devoted the vast majority of his life to humanitarian work along with his White Feather Basis (the white feather is a nod to Lennon’s late father, John), bringing life-saving pure sources to folks in growing nations round and doing his half to safeguard the environment.
Lennon’s newest mission is the movie, Kiss the Floor, the place he got here on board because the movie’s Govt Producer, making certain the mission had the expertise, funding and sources it wanted to be seen by as many people as potential. Filmmakers Rebecca and Josh Tickell are tireless and terribly gifted documentary filmmakers who co-wrote and co-directed Kiss the Floor, and as Rebecca Tickell explains, “As a result of COVID-19, by no means has there been a time on our planet when wellness has been such a precedence for therefore many. When most of us take into consideration wellness we consider our personal our bodies. It’s simple to overlook that our wellness is a perform of the ecosystem we dwell in.”
“It is a wholesome ecosystem, wholesome soil, and wholesome meals that results in wholesome folks,” says Josh Tickell. “The inverse can also be true, and we live the proof of that now. If we wish to dwell to our fullest potential because the caretakers of this nice backyard we name earth, we want higher manuals, higher narratives, and a greater framework for co-existing with our stunning planet.”
With their movie, Kiss the Floor, their objective is to inform a brand new story, which in some methods is an historical story of the way to dwell in a method that creates probably the most well being for the most individuals, whereas additionally regenerating the ecosystem that sustains us. After I ask the Tickells what Julian Lennon’s involvement has dropped at their movie, they inform me Lennon is “a uncommon human being with magical items.”
In 2011, Lennon serendipitously attended a celebration that Rebecca and Josh Tickell have been internet hosting on the Cannes Movie Pageant for the premiere of their movie, The Huge Repair, and remained in contact. “He was so moved by the thought of Kiss the Floor,” Josh Tickell beams, “that he got here on board as an Govt Producer and has been serving to ever since.” Along with Julian Lennon’s work behind the digicam, Woody Harrelson, Ian Somerhalder, Patricia and David Arquette, Rosario Dawson, Jason Mraz, Gisele Bundchen and Tom Brady seem within the movie. Their collective ardour for cultivating a more healthy planet is apparent from the second they every step onto the display screen.
Allison Kugel: You got here on board as Govt Producer of Kiss the Floor afterward in manufacturing. Did you study in regards to the movie by means of your White Feather Basis?
Julian Lennon: I heard in regards to the movie by means of a longtime English buddy, Darius Fisher, who’s an unimaginable editor and producer, himself. I knew of a few of his earlier work with Rebecca and Josh Tickell (co-directors/writers of “Kiss the Floor”) and I all the time cherished the stuff that Josh and Rebecca have executed. Just a few years in the past, Darius mentioned they have been within the early phases of this attention-grabbing mission referred to as Kiss the Floor and have been on the lookout for steerage, assist, and sponsorship; no matter I might probably carry to the desk. They confirmed me among the earlier [footage] and instantly I fell in love with the mission and needed to be a part of it.
Allison Kugel: In our trendy instances most of us are fairly disconnected from how we get our meals. Once we consider meals insecurity, folks equate it with cash or the shortage thereof. Most individuals suppose if they’ve loads of cash, they are going to all the time have loads of meals. Clearly, cash is a key factor right here, however the a part of the equation that individuals are lacking is that the true supply of our capability to feed ourselves, the true wealth, is within the earth and in our soil, which is at present compromised and proving to be a finite useful resource.
Julian Lennon: Sure, completely. I feel 80% or 90% of individuals do not realize the worth in soil and its well being. That is likely one of the factors that comes throughout on this movie. With out wholesome soil, we’re all screwed. As they are saying within the movie, there are extra organisms in a handful of soil than there are billions of stars within the universe. Attempting to get your head round that to begin with is a fairly large one, however understanding that biodiversity in our soil and in our meals is such an vital relationship for us and all dwelling species is vital. It is about understanding and tying that to microclimates and the way one factor results in one other. With out one, the opposite can not survive. It’s a necessity to maintain the soil, and your localized soil, as wholesome because it probably could be. It’s for the good thing about all. We might discuss this for hours (snicker).
Up by means of the very early twentieth century, human beings needed to work a lot more durable for his or her meals. They needed to work exhausting to eat. They needed to plant their vegatables and fruits, milk their very own cows, increase their very own chickens, domesticate their very own eggs. In consequence, I feel they have been far more related to the life cycle and what it takes to feed ourselves.
Julian Lennon: Appropriate. And plenty of my buddies and I now have greenhouses. I’m now rising all my very own greens. I feel lots of people are actually starting to know, particularly in immediately’s world the place lots of people have gotten sick, the connection between well being and meals. In immediately’s world you see so many individuals changing into sick from chemical substances which can be put, not solely into our water, however the run-off from the strategies of farming of the final 50 years. These so-called trendy farming strategies have gone on to destroy a lot goodness on the planet. Lots of people are lastly recognizing the connection between these chemical substances and the way in which farming is finished immediately, and their very own well being. The most cancers charges are up tenfold, if not one hundred-fold, from what they was once. I actually imagine all of it comes right down to what we now have been feeding ourselves over the past 50 years, and even earlier than that. I additionally suppose plenty of us weren’t conscious of that state of affairs, and I would not say solely governments are in charge, however sure farming cultures have been doing this with out our information of their farming on such a mass scale.
There have been two issues defined on this movie that I did not know. One, I believed tilling the land was factor. I believed you needed to until the land to plant seeds. Because it seems, tilling the land degrades and deteriorates our earth’s soil. Two, I believed grime and soil have been synonymous. After changing into educated from this documentary, I’m a bit embarrassed about what I did not know, however grateful to have realized it.
Julian Lennon: Nicely, within the movie you’ll be able to see that we are literally educating farmers on the way to farm correctly once more, and to appreciate that on the finish of the day, even with funds coming into play, doing it organically shouldn’t be solely more healthy for everyone, however you may make a greater buck out of it, and know that you just’re doing the best factor for everyone concerned. It isn’t just for this technology however for generations to return.
I am glad this documentary discovered a house at Netflix, as a result of Netflix has turn out to be this wonderful superhighway of data for folks.
Julian Lennon: I completely agree with that. Netflix is an effective residence, but it surely nonetheless must be seen and nonetheless must be heard. I’ve personally felt that there’s nonetheless plenty of crap on the market with among the documentaries coming ahead, that haven’t any readability to them. What I imagine with our movie Kiss the Floor is there’s absolute readability and absolute consciousness of options inside our movie. With plenty of the documentaries I see as of late, they depart you questioning, “Nicely, what do I do subsequent? What are the solutions?” Fortunately, I feel this movie leaves you with solutions as to what we are able to do to make a distinction and have a more healthy world and a more healthy planet.
Let’s discuss composting. There was part of the movie I believed was attention-grabbing, the place they have been displaying how in San Francisco, composting has turn out to be a lifestyle for the whole metropolis. Everybody has their compost bins and civil servants gather everybody’s compost together with all different recyclables like plastic and paper. Are you able to clarify precisely what composting is and the way folks can compost on their very own?
Julian Lennon: I am not a scientist. I am a layman too (snicker).
Nicely, from one layman to a different (laughs). Out of your private expertise…
Julian Lennon: All I do know is that with the breakdown of meals, I compost at residence, and it helps regenerate the soil and fertilize the soil that I am utilizing to develop my very own meals in.
How do you compost at residence? Share with us the way you try this.
Julian Lennon: I’ve a compost bin (new and used compost bins can be found for almost any funds) that each one leftover meals scraps go into, and that stays in there for a couple of months at a time. Then I exploit that as a fertilizer for the meals that I am rising. That is the way it operates and the way it has labored for me. It is improbable, the way in which it really works.
So, you simply put the unfastened scraps of natural meals waste right into a compost bin, let it sit for a really helpful period of time in order that it will probably break down, and you then add it to your soil?
Julian Lennon: You have obtained it. I’ve solely simply began moving into all of this myself, since this pretty 12 months began (laughs), so I am a beginner. All I do know is that it really works, and it’s a good approach to transfer ahead chemical-free. I’m additionally out at a couple of backyard facilities as of late, which I like to do, and so they now have skilled compost bins. There are a couple of I’ve my eye on. I simply want a couple of moments to dig in and do my analysis on which of them are the perfect for my state of affairs. The professional ones make it really easy to compost your meals. They’re not an costly factor to do, and I feel if you’re going to attempt to develop your individual meals in no matter capability, composting goes to be a significantly better factor for the general well being of your meals, your soil and our planet.
I do know you might be an Govt Producer on this movie. Nevertheless, I am curious why you did not wish to be on digicam? Individuals ought to know in regards to the work you do advocating for pure sources all around the world.
Julian Lennon: I by no means noticed myself within the mission as such. I got here alongside as a supporter to carry all the weather collectively. Had we sat down and talked about it, I might have been there in a heartbeat to do it. I used to be coming in as a buddy, as a supporter, and I simply did not see it from that perspective, by way of being within the movie. For probably the most half, it was a mission the place we already had most of its components stuffed in. Sure, I might have jumped in there, but it surely did not want me. I don’t suppose this would be the final movie of this type that I will be supporting. So, maybe subsequent time round. I am simply glad I used to be in a position to be there to introduce this to outdoors sponsors and supporters, and that different producers got here on board.
One bit of data within the movie is that we solely have sufficient wholesome and fertile topsoil for about 60 extra years of harvesting. That basically blew me away.
Julian Lennon:There are absolute modifications that we might nonetheless implement to show the unfavourable round on all of the environmental and humanitarian points we face. There are some wonderful professionals on this world which can be working so exhausting no matter political eventualities and governmental issues and attempting to show issues round. There are unimaginable folks at hand that actually are doing the perfect they’ll. Actually, I must say Josh and Rebecca and this movie sit on the prime of the desk, if not on the head of the desk, with attempting to place ahead a constructive change for environmental and humanitarian points shifting ahead
What’s the connection between consuming regionally grown, natural plant-based meals and defending or regenerating the soil on our planet?
Julian Lennon: A very long time in the past I used to be at a dinner within the UK sitting subsequent to the [Italian] actress Greta Scacchi. On the time I used to be younger and into the pop world, and actually hadn’t been concerned in environmental points in any respect at that stage. However she mentioned to me on the dinner desk, “Excuse my French, however why are they serving this fucking Evian water after we may very well be consuming regionally sourced water?!” She actually went off on it, and I could not perceive what it was all about at first. Then, after all, she went into explaining and she or he started to alter my enthusiastic about all of this. Greta raised the vital level, “Why are they delivery bottles of water around the globe to different components of the world?” And simply discussing the madness of all of it made sense to me. The price of it, the air pollution of it, alone… we’re speaking 30 years in the past and I used to be horrified to find out about that situation and what it is doing to our world, not solely the soil however the oceans too. That second made a heavy imprint on me and it has been a very long time now that I simply store regionally. I do know the butcher, the baker, the candlestick maker in my native areas now. I do know all the pieces about the place issues come from, and it’s all regionally oriented.
How has shopping for regionally modified your life for the higher?
Julian Lennon: For my private expertise, I’ve every kind of allergic reactions. Actually, since I’ve been consuming regionally grown meals and honey, I’ve not had any of the problems that I had earlier than with allergic reactions or diseases. You turn out to be a part of the little universe you inhabit, and I feel that is an vital function every of us can play. Clearly, it’s tougher whenever you’re dwelling in cities. However I additionally know there are plenty of initiatives shifting ahead the place in some cities, plenty of buildings are actually incorporating the rising of meals inside inside greenhouses and even rooftops of cities. Some cities are actually designing buildings with the concept that they’re nearly dwelling buildings.
There are city co-op gardens. I do know individuals who have began some.
Julian Lennon: It is a main step ahead. I eat what is obtainable when it is obtainable, regionally. For me, that has made a serious distinction in life and I feel this movie is also a step in direction of different folks understanding the way it advantages all of us.
I’ve to ask you the religious query that I ask everybody. What do you suppose you got here into this life as Julian Lennon to study, and what do you suppose you got here right here to show?
Julian Lennon: I must say that it is about compassion and empathy. I clearly have discovered myself in a really distinctive place in life, and I’ve had a alternative by which route I might’ve gone in. I imagine that actually it was my mom (the late Cynthia Powell Lennon, first spouse of the late John Lennon) on the religious entrance who influenced me, by means of discovering and observing what she went by means of in her life. It made me a greater individual, and I needed to make her proud in something and all the pieces that I used to be doing. To try this one must be nearly as good an individual as one could be. I’ve clearly taken that on board and that has been a massively vital lesson for me. Due to the alternatives I’ve made, I have been in a position to journey around the globe, from the standpoint of my pictures, and likewise with the White Feather Basis (Lennon’s non-profit basis).
What are a few of your previous charitable excursions you might be most pleased with?
Julian Lennon: Oh, going to Ethiopia to see the water wells, going to Colombia and assembly with the Kogi Tribe, which is likely one of the oldest tribes round. Doing a documentary in regards to the Aboriginals in Australia. Not that I do it to really feel good, however I do really feel higher as an individual once I’m attempting to do higher work and educate folks additional, whether or not that is by means of music, pictures, documentary movies, or in any other case. I additionally really feel you can not shove these items down folks’s throats. It’s about affecting the best stability and inflicting sufficient folks to wish to do one thing about it or wish to study extra. I really feel I have been fairly good at that, whether or not it has been by means of songs like Saltwater or by means of the documentary work, or by means of my pictures. That is all a part of my goal, I feel. It is passing on the training, the world training that I’ve realized by means of the travels of labor that I do. Generally, particularly with the information and the world immediately, issues have turn out to be so insular that you just overlook there’s one other world on the market.
What do you hope the viewers will take away from watching this movie?
Julian Lennon: I hate to be blunt, however when you kill the soil, you kill your self. All of us depend upon one another, from the smallest atom to the biggest dwelling organisms on this world. We’re all related. That’s what I feel folks should understand. Once you do one thing, it impacts not solely you, however all people else too. Being conscious of that lets you be a bit extra understanding within the issues that we face.
What can folks do in their very own neighborhood to contribute to the rejuvenation of our earth and our soil?
Julian Lennon:Do all the pieces regionally. That’s what my takeaway from this movie, Kiss the Floor, and this motion can be. Not solely on the air pollution entrance and the horrendous stuff we do on the planet, however by conserving it native you’ll be able to hold it clear, and recent. That’s the vital takeaway.
The brand new film Kiss the Floor, premiering September twenty second on Netflix, focuses on soil regeneration and the way it may help local weather management. Go to KissTheGround.com and comply with on Instagram @kissthegroundmovie. You may as well be a part of the motion on Instagram @kisstheground.
Allison Kugel is a syndicated leisure columnist and writer of the memoir, Journaling Fame: A memoir of a life unhinged and on the record. Comply with on Instagram @theallisonkugel and at AllisonKugel.com.
Photograph Credit score: Deborah Anderson
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