Stefania Sitbon

STEFANIA SITBON: HIDING LIKE ANIMALS
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Survivor Stefania Sitbon travels back to Poland to show her daughters, where her family was hidden during the war: The Warsaw Zoo. She met Teresa, the Zabinskis’ daughter, and toured the basement she once called home. There, hung on a wall, she found a copy of the picture of her parents from 1947. After the war, the Zabinskis had asked for the photo and put it in the room where her mother stayed to remember Stefania’s parents.

The story of how Jan and Antonina Zabinski provided refuge to hundreds of Jews during World War II, was first told in Diane Ackerman’s book “The Zookeeper’s Wife” and recently through a film with the same title starring Jessica Chastain.

For Stefania, “The Zookeeper’s Wife” is not a film or a book; it’s a memory. Stefania, a 4-year-old Jew in Nazi-occupied Poland spent some time in hiding, living in the basement and cages of the Warsaw Zoo but, when the zoo staff was gone, she and her brother would run around and play. When the German soldiers arrived, Antonina, the zookeeper’s wife, would play the piano as a warning and Stefania and her family would hide in empty animal cages.

English language; 10 min.

Slawomir Grunberg

Slawomir Grunberg is an Emmy Award winning documentary producer, director and cameraman is a graduate of the Polish Film School in Lodz. Born in Poland, he immigrated to the US in 1981 and has since directed and produced over 45 documentary films including: Don’t Cry When I’m Gone, Karski & The Lords of Humanity, Shimon’s Returns, Castaways, Santa Rosa, The Peretzniks, Portraits of Emotion, Coming Out in Poland,The Legacy of Jedwabne and Saved by Deportation. Grunberg’s film School Prayer: A Community At War, screened on PBS, received an Emmy Award. It also won The Jan Karski Award, a competition designed to recognize and award outstanding television documentaries produced on the theme of moral courage. Grunberg is a recipient of Guggenheim Fellowship, the New York Foundation for the Arts and Soros Justice Media Fellowships. His credits as director of photography include: Legacy (Academy Award nomination for best documentary feature in 2001), and Sister Rose’s Passion, which won best short doc at Tribeca Film Festival in 2004 and received an Academy Award nomination for best documentary short in 2005.

Screenwriter:
Slawomir Grunberg & Naomi Wise

Director:
Slawomir Grunberg

Photography:
Slawomir Grunberg

Editor:
Malgorzata Lukomska

Producer:
Canadian March of The Living Digital Archive Production

Distributor:
LogTV, LTD