About the Film
This film will tell the story of the photojournalist and activist Julia Pirotte. Her extraordinary life, the power of her photography, and the richness of her Fortunoff testimony make her a terrific subject. The film will like her life be one of movement: going from a Polish shtetl to imprisonment to labor activism in Belgium to the resistance in Vichy France to postwar Poland. By combining activism and photojournalism she was involved in historical events but also captured them. The film will feature Pirotte’s photography of the everyday and the extraordinary including from her archive at the Museum of Photography at Charleroi. The far-reaching impact of her photography of the Kiece Pogrom of 1946 will be discussed by experts and through using other testimonies. But I think the greatest attraction of this story is the intimacy of Julia Pirotte’s Fortunoff testimony in Yiddish. It will help make this film a moving personal portrait.
Asaf Galay is an award-winning filmmaker whose documentaries examine the creativity of modern Jewish culture. His recently-completed documentary The Adventures of Saul Bellow will be screened as part of the PBS American Masters series. It was awarded a grant by the National Endowment for the Humanities and was a winner of the Library of Congress Lavine/Ken Burns Prize for Film. He is currently directing and producing Cartooning America about one of the world's most popular and controversial cartoon characters in the 1930s, Betty Boop. This film is also supported by the NEH. His celebration of kitsch pop music Army of Lovers in the Holy Land won top honors at the 2018 Haifa Film Festival. He also directed and produced The Muses of Bashevis Singer about the great Yiddish writer Isaac Bashevis Singer. His earlier films include The Hebrew Superhero which looks at comic book culture in Israel while Hasidistock is a "joyous and surprisingly profound" documentary on ultra-Orthodox Jewish pop singers.
Trailer coming shortly.