7th Art Releasing has acquired and will release Claire Ferguson's documentary Destination Unknown. Using only the survivor's own words, the film weaves a vivid narrative of lives stained by the Holocaust. 7th Art Releasing will release the film theatrically on November 10th.
Tracing the journeys from the outbreak of war, Destination Unknown weaves through the misery of the ghettos, to the unimaginable horrors of the camps and how the survivors see light in the darkness as they make new lives from the ruins of the old. Creating a seamless mosaic of first-hand accounts, rare archival footage and photos from during and after the war, survivors share their memories and capture the pain that continues to haunt them, with the strength and resilience needed to live on. Destination Unknown just had its critically praised theatrical run in the UK, where The Times gave it 4 Stars and The Guardian gave it 5 Stars hailing that it’s a powerful, valuable addition to Holocaust testimony. The film had its world premiere at the Sheffield Doc Fest.
Making her theatrical directorial debut, Claire Ferguson is best known for her work editing feature documentaries such as Nick Broomfield’s Aileen: The Life and Death of a Serial Killer and the Grammy-winning Concert for George. Her directorial work includes The Beatles in Help! and The Concert for Bangladesh Revisited.
Director Claire Ferguson said: “I wanted to make a film where the only voices are those of the survivors themselves. The challenge was to weave those individual voices together in a way that created a wider story, one that explored not only the pain of the Holocaust itself, but the building of new lives afterwards. My overriding question was ‘How can you make a life after such pain."
Producer Llion Roberts said: “I was inspired to start this project fourteen years ago when I visited Auschwitz in 2001. I wanted to ensure that the remarkable stories of those who survived the Holocaust were preserved for posterity. In the years since, I have met and interviewed a remarkable range of incredible people whose lives are an inspiration to us all. From the four hundred hours of testimonies that I recorded, I wanted a film which captured the essence of their experience, made a contribution to the history of those times and perpetuated the memory of the Shoah.”
Udy Epstein from 7th Art Releasing said: “This comprehensive, yet intimate documentary takes us into the lives of those who lived during the Holocaust. The stories are articulated so powerfully that we gain a new - deeper insight into one of mankind’s darkest times. Fourteen years in the making, this documentary is important for those who think they knew all there is to know about the Holocaust and especially for those who never wanted to know. Deeper understanding of the Holocaust is extremely important today when neo-Nazis freely walk in America’s streets, hence Destination Unknown is a must see.”
Destination Unknown is produced by Llion Roberts. Executive producers are Dr Stephen Smith and Christopher Hird.