In 1966, Deann Borshay Liem was adopted by an American family and was sent from Korea to her new home. Growing up in California, the memory of her birth family was nearly obliterated until recurring dreams lead Deann to discover the truth: her Korean mother was very much alive. Bravely uniting her biological and adoptive families, Deann's heartfelt journey makes First Person Plural a poignant essay on family, loss, and the reconciling of two identities.
First Person Plural was broadcast nationally on PBS in December, 2000, through the award-winning documentary series, Point of View (POV). The film will have an encore presentation on PBS on August 10, 2010. We invite you to explore the film’s official website for in-depth information about the program.
Her passport said she was Cha Jung Hee. She knew she was not. So began a 40-year deception for a Korean adoptee who came to the U.S. in 1966. Told to keep her true identity secret from her new American family, this 8-year-old quickly forgot she was ever anyone else. But why had her identity been switched? And who was the real Cha Jung Hee? IN THE MATTER OF CHA JUNG HEE is the search to find the answers, as acclaimed filmmaker Deann Borshay Liem (FIRST PERSON PLURAL, POV 2000) returns to her native Korea to find her “double,” the mysterious girl whose place she took in America.
MEMORY OF FORGOTTEN WAR conveys the human costs of military conflict through deeply personal accounts of the Korean War (1950-1953) by four Korean-American survivors. Their stories take audiences through the trajectory of the war, from extensive bombing campaigns, to day-to-day struggle for survival, and separation from family members across the DMZ. Decades later, each person reunites with relatives in North Korea, conveying beyond words the meaning of family loss. These stories belie the notion that war ends when the guns are silenced and foreshadow the future of countless others displaced by ongoing military conflict today.
Geographies of Kinship - The Korean Adoption Story is the latest documentary from award-winning filmmaker, Deann Borshay Liem. The film follows Korean adoptees from the U.S. and Europe on their journeys to reconnect with their birth country and piece together their past. Their riveting stories serve as a springboard for exploring the complex history of transnational adoptions of Korean children from the 1950s to the present. The film is the recipient of major grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities, Cal Humanities, and the Berkeley Film Foundation, along with support from nearly 600 Kickstarter backers.
Within Every Woman is a film that explores the forgotten history of the "comfort women," a term used to describe over 200,000 girls, some as young as nine years old, who were forced into sexual slavery during World War II in Asia. The film chronicles the horrific crimes these women endured over sixty years ago. But more importantly, the film chronicles their resilience and how today they work toward reconciliation and justice, while also struggling to make peace with the past. The film is directed by Tiffany Hsiung and produced by Deann Borshay Liem and Chris Kang.