The Peacemaker

Directed by James Demo
Official website:
Previous Boston Globe Feature:

The Peacemaker – Trailer from Central Square Films on Vimeo.

THE PEACEMAKER follows international peacemaker Padraig O’Malley, who helps make peace for others but struggles to find it for himself. 

The film takes us from Padraig’s isolated life in Cambridge, Massachusetts to some of the most dangerous crisis zones on Earth – from Northern Ireland to Kosovo, Nigeria to Iraq over five years – as he works a peacemaking model based on his recovery from addiction.  We meet Padraig in the third act of his life in a race against time to find some kind of salvation for both the world and himself.

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The Peacemaker takes viewers into Padraig O’Malley’s world of negotiations and conferences with leaders from war-torn regions. Interviews with O’Malley and key figures in his life paint an intricate portrait of what motivates him to take on the seemingly impossible and show us how one man can truly make a difference.

The basic premise of O’Malley’s work is that cultures in conflict are in the best position to help other cultures in conflict. He had first applied this philosophy during “the troubles” in Northern Ireland bringing the Northern Irish to South Africa for a conference called the Great Indaba hosted by Nelson Mandela to restart a dialog and one year later the Good Friday agreement was signed.  The Northern Irish praised the South Africans as having made the difference. Now, in the face of seemingly intractable differences in Iraq, The Northern Irish and South Africans that participated in the Great Indaba, all once mortal enemies, have agreed to reconvene to help the Iraqis.

the-peacemaker_still_02But, O’Malley’s efforts do not stop with Iraq. He has developed a program called The Forum for Cities in Transition, that will annually convene ten different cities in deep sectarian conflict from around the globe.  The first host city, Mitrovica Kosovo is a community split in two factions, Serb and Albanian, who currently do not dare to cross into each other’s neighborhoods, yet O’Malley has convinced them to be the first sponsors of this ambitious effort.  Attending will be opposed cultures from cities with equally contentious struggles: Jerusalem (Israel), Haifa (Israel), Beruit (Lebanon), Kaduna (Nigeria), Mostar (Bosnia), Belfast (Ireland), Derry (Ireland), Kirkuk (Iraq) and Nicosia (Cyprus).

The Peacemaker follows Padraig O’Malley as he continues his formidable work to help cultures steeped in sectarianism resolve conflict by applying his groundbreaking approach.


James Demo is an award winning independent filmmaker who writes, directs and produces. His most recent film First Time Long Time, a short comedy stars John Savage in the lead role and co-stars Emmy award-winning actress Amanda Plummer and Hollywood icon Karen Black.  In 2009, First Time Long Time premiered at Sedona Film Festival and also screened at prestigious festivals including the Nashville, Cleveland and Woodstock Film Festivals. In 2006, Demo founded Central Square Films in Cambridge, Massachusetts where he has produced several films and commercial work.