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Independent whisky documentary 'The Water of Life' to make its Lancaster premiere next week

Produced and directed by 3 filmmakers with Central Pennsylvania ties, the film, which focuses on the Scotch whisky revolution, will screen at Zoetropolis Cinema.

LANCASTER, Pa. — Three filmmakers with ties to Central Pennsylvania will be in Lancaster next week to host three showings of their independent documentary on the Scotch whiskey revolution and the craftsmen, chemists, and renegades that helped fuel it.

"The Water of Life -- A Whiskey Film" will make its Lancaster premiere at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, July 28 at the Zoetropolis Cinema Stillhouse. Two additional screenings will be held Friday, July 30 at 6:30 and 8:30 p.m.

Wednesday's screening will be followed by a tasting of Waterford Irish Single Malt Whisky at Tellus360, at 8 p.m.

The Water of Life, directed by Lancaster native Greg W. Swartz, focuses on the revolution that turned the stagnant Scotch whisky industry of the 1980s into the titan it is today. 

Producer Alfonse Palaima is also a former Lancastrian, while Cinematographer Brad Kenyon is still a resident of the city, and his Aurora Films served as co-producers on the film. 

Starting behind the locked gates of an abandoned distillery, Jim McEwan and Mark Reynier — “the most unlikely partnership in the history of whisky” — share their personal experiences of the risk-taking and wild experimentation they used to turn the Bruichladdich Distillery into a creative and financial powerhouse. 

The film also takes viewers on the journeys of visionaries like Gordon & MacPhail, Billy Walker, Dr. Rachel Barrie and David Stewart, whose mixture of talent, chemistry, hard work, grit, and a little sprinkle of magic paved the way for the next generation of innovators like Adam Hannett, Kelsey McKechnie, Liam Hughes, Iain Croucher, and Eddie Brook. 

The Water of Life is a uniquely personal perspective on the evolution of whisky by those who lived it – the story of those who played a key part in rediscovering the crafting of the ancient spirit. 

The 88-minute film will screen from 6-7:30pm at Zoetropolis. That screening will be followed by a whisky tasting of one of the newest and most sought after whiskies in the world: Waterford Distillery’s Irish Single Malts. 

Featured in the film, the single-farm whiskies explore a winemaker’s approach to whisky, with a dedication to provenance and terroir. 

For tickets, please visit: https://zoetropolis.com/special_events/the-water-of-life/ 

For more info, please visit: https://www.wateroflifefilm.com 

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