To Never Forget comprises of a series of fictional ‘imagined’ narrative films shot in 360 film technology based on atrocity photographs taken in Latvia during World War II. In December 1941, Nazi troops and their Latvian collaborators executed 2731 Latvian Jews in the dunes surrounding the town of Skede. To provide a fresh perspective and introduce the Holocaust to younger generations, we create 360 degree film by dramatizing the lead up moments to some of the photographs taken of the people who were executed. The aim of this research project is to familiarise younger generations with the Holocaust with the hope that it will spark a genuine interest to further investigate what happened. The approach using Virtual Reality and 360 degree filming to bring to life atrocity photographs taken by Nazi perpetrators is predicated on the idea supported by key creative strategists like Roy DeYoung who argues that “virtual reality is the next frontier for building authentic experiences with young consumers” (DeYoung in Harrison 2017). To Never Forget raises a number of questions in relation to representation, ethics, and effective education. We are currently in pre-production and will move towards production to realise this project with completion to be February 2020. Our key question to investigate throughout the process: how might these 360 degree films be effective in retaining the memory about the atrocities without traumatizing the viewer? As part of the session – with the finished product - I hope to unpack the answers to this question.
Senior Lecturer / Program Director Master of Screen Production, Griffith Film School , Griffith University
Peter is a filmmaker- Academic who has been working at the Griffith Film School since 2013. He was appointed the Program Director of the Master of Screen Production in 2017 and is also the course convenor for documentary production. Prior to his appointment at Griffith, Peter has spent 15 years in the industry producing and directing broadcast and cinema documentaries as well as short fictional works. Over the years. his films have received critical acclaim including a shortlist for the Academy Awards in 2004. His work both drama and documentary is characterised by a commitment to social justice.