Resistance: They Fought Back

Directors Paula S. Apsell and Kirk Wolfinger, Producers Lisa Goodfellow and Owen Palmquist
Resistance: They Fought Back


Contrary to what most people believe, in WWII Jews waged at least 60 armed rebellions in ghettos, 25 in concentration and slave labor camps, fought by the thousands within partisan units, and joined campaigns of non-violent resistance against the Nazis. Resistance: They Fought Back travels to Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Israel, and the U.S. to illuminate the forgotten, and largely unknown, stories of Jewish resistance during the Holocaust.

Phase of Support: Production

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Paula S. Apsell

Paula S. Apsell - Executive Producer, Co-Director

For 33 years, Paula Apsell was the senior executive producer of the PBS NOVA science series. Prior to that, she produced and directed a dozen NOVA episodes, and was a Fellow in the Public Understanding of Science at MIT. During her long tenure at NOVA, Paula was responsible for supervising more than 600 documentaries on a wide variety of subjects in the sciences, and one, The Bible’s Buried Secrets, an exploration of the archeology of the Hebrew Bible, with partial funding provided by the Righteous Persons Foundation. She also co-directed and executive produced one of the most watched NOVA episodes, Holocaust Escape Tunnel. During her tenure, NOVA won every major broadcasting award, including the Emmy, the Peabody, the duPont-Columbia University Gold and Silver Batons, and an Academy Award nomination for Special Effects. In 2018 she was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Emmy of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.

Kirk Wolfinger

Kirk Wolfinger - Co-Director, Executive Producer

Kirk Wolfinger is an Emmy and Peabody Award-winning filmmaker and President of Lone Wolf Media, production partner for the feature-length documentary film Resistance and The Resistance Project. Lone Wolf is widely known as a leader in factual entertainment and is responsible for many award-winning nationally broadcast documentaries on PBS as well as the National Geographic, History and Smithsonian Channels, and more than 25 documentaries for the science series NOVA alone. Kirk’s forte is adventure, science, and historical programming. Among the many NOVA episodes he directed is Holocaust Escape Tunnel.

Owen Palmquist

Owen Palmquist - Producer

Owen is a factual television writer and producer who has been making films since 2003 when he joined the Science Unit at National Geographic Television and Film. Since then, he has traveled the globe producing a steady stream of long-form documentaries, television series, and digital shorts for nearly every major factual broadcaster including Hulu, ABC, National Geographic, PBS, History, TruTV, and the Smithsonian Channel. Owen’s past projects include writing six specials for PBS NOVA, including Holocaust Escape Tunnel and The Last B-24. He has also produced and written limited series for History and Smithsonian as well as recurring series for National Geographic and Smithsonian. Owen was the Producer and Writer for Holocaust Escape Tunnel.

Lisa Goodfellow

Lisa Goodfellow - Producer

Lisa made her way from the world of books and photography to documentary film production for Lone Wolf Media starting in 2013. Her work in documentary film has given her the opportunity to step from the pages of the history books to dig in, sometimes literally, to some of the world’s most fascinating and iconic historic moments for networks including NOVA, PBS, Smithsonian Channel and History. In 2020 Lisa was nominated for an Emmy for an episode of Smithsonian Network’s America’s Hidden Stories. Lisa was the Associate Producer for Holocaust Escape Tunnel.

Project logline and bios courtesy of the grantees.