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Only 40 left? Out of 30,000. Are they holocaust survivors? The market remains strong for well done holocaust docs.
You should at least screen ALL OF THEM and any relatives about for on-camera interview potiential. There must be some good story tellers in there.
There are many docs on the theme of reconnecting with long lost relatives and places. Well done documentaries can be studied and analyzed in general or inside-out (scene by scene, even shot by shot). I’d recommend My Architect as a very well done doc on many levels that includes themes of discovering and connecting with family, visiting foreign countries, capturing the soul of structures/builidings. There are numerous others. You can probably find them by accident. The doc Shanghai Ghetto is a standout, and the survivors revisiting their old neighborhood in Shanghai may be germane to your project. For footage that has really grabbed me in a film or commercial, I sometimes dub into slow motion to see what is actually going on from an editing standpoint. Both My Architect (Oscar nominee for ’04) and Shanghai Ghetto are available from amazon.
Your neighborhood sounds like travelogue material. Perhaps you could work that appeal into the doc or make it dominant. Among those who do foreign travel, Eastern Europe seems to be a hot destination right now. I can’t go anywhere without meeting someone who’s been to Prague in the last two years or is planning this trip or a revisit.
Good luck to you. Get busy, have fun, and get ready to drink lots of coffee!
REGARDS … TOM 8)