When Australian filmmaker Sophia Turkiewicz was seven years old, her Polish mother, Helen, abandoned her in an Adelaide orphanage. Sophia never forgot this maternal act of betrayal. Now in middle age, as Sophia examines her troubled relationship with Helen, she discovers the story behind Helen’s miraculous wartime escape from a Siberian gulag, her subsequent survival against the odds and the truth about an historic betrayal involving Stalin and the Allies.
With Helen sliding into dementia, Sophia must confront her own demons. Did she ever truly know this woman who became her mother? Does she have it in her heart to forgive her? And is it too late?
*** Winner of 10 International and 8 Australian awards
A SELECTION OF OUR PRODUCTIONS
ABOUT CHANGE FOCUS MEDIA
ROD FREEDMAN & LESLEY SEEBOLD
Change Focus Media was established in Balmain, Sydney in 1997 by partners Lesley Seebold and Rod Freedman. We produce documentaries, corporate, educational and promotional videos. Our clients come from the spectrum of government, corporate, community and private sectors.
Our corporate productions are designed to engage their audiences and satisfy our clients.
Our documentaries have won international awards and screened in film festivals all over the world.
Whether for distribution on DVD, TV, website or streaming, Change Focus Media will help you create a
strong and engaging video communication. Contact us to discuss your next project.
CHANGE FOCUS CLIENTS
Adult Migrant English Service
Adult Migrant English Program, Macquarie University
Australian Early Childhood Association
Australian Liquor & Hospitality Group
Australian Centre for Posttraumatic Mental Health
Australian Dental Association
Benevolent Society Post Adoption Resource Centre
Department of Health and Ageing
Department of Veterans Affairs
EndoActive Australia & NZ
Health Support Services
Health Workforce Australia
Huhtamaki Worldwide Packaging
Institute of Early Childhood, Macquarie University
Interactive Business Presentations
Jewish Communal Appeal
Lady Gowrie Child Centre
Mia Mia Child & Family Study Centre
Maritime Union of Australia
Museum of Australian Democracy, Old Parliament House
Macquarie University National Centre for English Language Teaching & Research
Macquarie University School of Business and Finance
NSW Adult Migrant English Service
NSW Attorney General’s Department
Rural Health Education Foundation
Sydney Jewish Museum
Sydney University Physics Foundation
University of NSW School of Public & Community Medicine
University of NSW Office of Business & Technology
University of Technology, Sydney School of Mathematical Sciences
Voiceless – The Fund For Animals
Westlake Family Support Service
2010 Association – Gay and Lesbian Youth
MORE ABOUT OUR PRODUCTIONS
Once My Mother is a multi award winning feature documentary and Study Guide for educators. A troubled mother and daughter relationship played out over a lifetime reveals an epic journey from a Siberian gulag to safety in Australia and a story of survival, conflict and forgiveness. Director Sophia Turkiewicz. Producer Rod Freedman. Associate Producer Australia – Bob Connolly. Associate Producers Poland – Janusz &Kamil Skalkowski. Editor Denise Haslem. Composer Cezary Skubiszewski.
AUDIENCE AWARD, Krakow Film Festival, Poland
TIME OF HISTORY AWARD, Valladolid International Film Festival, Spain
PRESIDENT’S AWARD FOR OUTSTANDING HUMAN VALUES, 26th Polish Film Festival in America, Chicago
BEST DOCUMENTARY FILM, Ann Arbor Polish Film Festival, USA
BEST DOCUMENTARY, Tiburon International Film Festival, USA
BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE, St Louis International Film Festival, USA
SPECIAL AWARD, Prowincjonalia Film Festival, Poland
SPECIAL AWARD Niepokorni, Niezlomni, Wiekleci Film Festival Gdynia, Poland
AWARD, International Historical & Military Film Festival, Warsaw
SPECIAL PRIZE, Cinema With A Soul, Warsaw
BEST FEATURE DOCUMENTARY, Australian Directors Guild Awards
AUDIENCE AWARD BEST DOCUMENTARY, Adelaide Film Festival
AUDIENCE AWARD BEST FILM, Canberra International Film Festival
BEST TELEVISION DOCUMENTARY UNAA Media Peace Awards
BEST MUSIC IN DOCUMENTARY, CEZARY SKUBISZEWSKI, Australian Screen Music Awards
BEST EDITING FEATURE DOCUMENTARY, DENISE HASLEM, Australian Screen Editors Awards
BEST DOCUMENTARY BIOGRAPHY, ATOM Awards
BEST FEATURE DOCUMENTARY Nomination, AACTA Awards
BEST SOUND Nomination, AACTA Awards
FINALIST, Sydney Film Festival Documentary Competition
FINALIST, Walkley Foundation Awards
SHORTLISTED, SCRIPTWRITING & MULTICULTURAL CATEGORIES, NSW Premier’s Literary Awards
FILM FESTIVALS Australia
Adelaide, Canberra, Sydney, Launceston & Caloundra Film Festivals
FILM FESTIVALS International
FIPA, Biarritz, France
Valladolid International Film Festival, Spain
Krakow Film Festival, Poland
‘Niepokorni, Niezlomni, Wiekleci’ Film Festival, Gdynia, Poland
Prowincjonalia Film Festival, Poland
‘Generations Remember’ Kresy Siberia Conference, Warsaw
Cinema With A Soul Festival, Warsaw
Edmonton International Film Festival, Canada
Festival Internacional de Televisao de Sao Paulo, Brazil
16th Rencontres Internationales du Cinéma des Antipodes, St Tropez France
Festival Regards d’Ailleurs, Dreux, France
Rhode Island International Film Festival USA
Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival USA
Kansas International Film Festival USA
Polish Film Festival in America, Chicago USA
Seattle Polish Film Festival USA
Ann Arbor Polish Film Festival USA
Los Angeles Polish Film Festival USA
Womens History Month Film Festival USA
Tiburon International Film Festival USA
Vilnius International Film Festival, Lithuania
Moscow International Documentary Film Festival, Russia
Biografilm Festival, Bologna Italy
Down Under Berlin Film Festival, Germany
Batumi International Art House Film Festival, Georgia
International Historical & Military Film Festival, Warsaw
International Festival of World Cinema, Milan
St Louis International Film Festival, USA
PolArt Film Festival, Melbourne
Mumbai International Film Festival, India
iDocs International Film Festival, Beijing
SHARED PERSPECTIVES / ENDOACTIVE CONFERENCE
SHARED PERSPECTIVES is a unique educational resource for women living with Endometriosis and the Health Care Professionals who treat them. Produced from a groundbreaking 2015 conference at Sydney University initiated by dynamic health promotion charity, EndoActive Australia & NZ. Includes 6 hours of essential information on Endometriosis from 14 top health presenters, with additional themed interviews with women living with Endo. The DVD set is available from EndoActive and streamable at VIMEO ON DEMAND. Producers – Lesley Seebold, Rod Freedman. Editor – Joshua Marks, Camera – Rod Freedman, Joshua Marks, Steven Salgo.
‘Best Public Health Initiative’ 2016 Prime Awards.
WRONG SIDE OF THE BUS
2009. 56mins. ABC Compass. Professor Sidney Bloch, determined to confront his guilt for colluding with Apartheid, returns to South Africa with his teenage son on a quest for reconciliation. View the website for the STUDY GUIDE and PRESS KIT. Festival screenings in SYDNEY, MELBOURNE, BOSTON, NEW YORK, WASHINGTON, VANCOUVER, CALGARY, RHODE ISLAND, MINNEAPOLIS, SAN DIEGO, JERUSALEM, HAIFA, TEL AVIV, AUSTIN, SEATTLE, SOUTH CAROLINA, ST LOUIS, SOUTH AFRICA, LONDON. “Best African Documentary” – International Film Festival South Africa. Produced, written and directed by Rod Freedman. Editor Joanne Levitan. Camera Marc Radomsky. Music Todd Hunter. Script Editor Lesley Seebold.
A public awareness DVD profiling VOICELESS – The Fund For Animals, highlighting their Grants programs to organisations that share their vision of a world in which animals are treated with respect and compassion. Producer, Director – Rod Freedman Camera – Joanne Parker, Rod Freedman Editor – Thabo Nel Music – Michael Yerzinsky.
THE STRONG SERIES
6 x 26 mins. SBS, NITV. START STRONG, KEEP SAFE, STAY STRONG, STRONG AND DEADLY, LIVE STRONG and SEE STRONG. Six programs on Indigenous health issues in rural and remote areas, from babies to adults. Produced for the Rural Health Education Foundation.
A PLACE TO CALL HOME
Greystanes Children’s Home in Leura, NSW was a large residential centre for children and young adults with disabilities and complex health care needs. In the late 1990s, a decision was made to close the institution and support its residents to live in the community. This is the story of devolution: one of the most important social policy initiatives taking place in modern Australian society. Introduced by Julie McCrossin, this DVD records the journeys of Greystanes residents, families and staff as they look back on their life changing experience. Other parents whose adult children still reside in institutions also share their hopes and fears of a future life in the community. Director, Lesley Seebold. Producer, Rod Freedman. Editor, Joanne Levitan. Camera, Jeff Bruer, Rod Freedman.
2003 – 2007. Three series of 7 x 26m for Film Australia & SBS. Significant Australians reflect on their lives and achievements. Producer/Director: Rod Freedman. Interviewer: Robin Hughes.
Features: Betty Churcher, Thomas Keneally, Marjorie Jackson-Nelson, Bud Tingwell, Bernard Smith, Joan Winch, Bill Mollison, Sir Zelman Cowen, Anne Deveson, Tom Bass, Noel Tovey, Noeline Brown, Max Lake, Joan Kirner, David Williamson, June Dally-Watkins, Donald Metcalf, May O’Brien, Ted Egan, Don Burrows, Dame Beryl Beaurepaire.
I CAN’T HEAR YOU
A DVD in 8 languages about Otitis Media (glue ear) for parents and child care workers. Includes animation and interviews with professionals and parents. Produced by Lesley Seebold for Lady Gowrie Child Centre and NSW Department of Community Services.
A 30 second community awareness campaign using animation and special effects to demonstrate the effects of cigarette smoking on an unborn baby. Produced for the Rural Health Education Foundation. Producer/Director Lesley Seebold.
AUSTRALIA’S PRIME MINISTERS
2009. 27 x 3 mins for the Museum of Australian Democracy, Old Parliament House, Canberra. Biographies of each of Australia’s PMs for permanent display on touch screens. Also screened on History Channel and ABCTV.
A five part longitudinal series produced for the the Institute of Early Childhood, Macquarie University NSW, showing the philosophies and practice of the internationally renowned Mia-Mia Child and Family Study Centre. Part 1:The Program for 2-5 year olds Part 2:The Infants program (under twos) Part 3: Building Relationships Part 4: The Outside Environment Part 5 Thinking About Thinking
52m. SBS. A personal documentary about Rod Freedman’s 93 year old great uncle in Lithuania, UNCLE CHATZKEL portrays the patient triumph of one man’s dignity and intellect over genocide, oppression and personal tragedy. DVD available here. Streamable here. Free Study Guide here.
Produced, written and directed by Rod Freedman. Screened in over 50 international film festivals, nominated for two AFI awards and winner of many international awards, including: NY Independent Film & Video Festival – BEST DIRECTOR International Documentary, Washington Jewish Film Festival – AUDIENCE AWARD, Sichuan TV Festival – FINALIST, Shanghai Television Festival – FINALIST, Columbus International Film & Video Festival – HONOURABLE MENTION, LA International Film & Video Festival – BEST DOCUMENTARY, New York Festivals – FINALIST, Sydney Film Festival Dendy Awards – HIGHLY COMMENDED
Change Focus Media produces documentaries, corporate, educational and promotional videos. Whether for distribution on DVD, television, website or streaming, Change Focus Media will help you create a strong and engaging video communication.
CONTACT US TO DISCUSS YOUR NEXT PROJECT
PO Box 240 Balmain New South Wales 2041 AUSTRALIA