The Escape


When filmmaker Marlo Poras’ grandmother escaped Nazi-occupied Austria, she was stripped of citizenship and everything she owned. Now, Austria is offering descendants like Marlo citizenship as restitution, sending her on a journey deep into the Alps to unearth an unsettling history that challenges Austria’s selective memory and has haunting lessons for today.

Phase of Support: Development

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Marlo Poras

Marlo Poras - Director, Producer

Marlo Poras is an independent filmmaker based in Brooklyn. Her critically acclaimed feature documentaries Mai’s America (P.O.V.), Run Granny Run (HBO) and The Mosuo Sisters (PBS) received dozens of international awards, including two Audience Awards for Feature Documentary at SXSW and Best Feature Documentary from the International Documentary Association (IDA). She’s the recipient of fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the Sundance Institute, the NEH, and the Massachusetts Cultural Council. Her work has been awarded funding from dozens of organizations, including: ITVS, Cinereach, the Sundance Institute, the Gucci Tribeca Documentary Fund, the Jerome Foundation, the Women in Film Foundation, Chicken and Egg, the LEF Foundation, Claims Conference, NYSCA and NYFA. Her most recent film, Icebreakers, is a documentary short she co-directed that will stream with The New Yorker over the next year.

David Sutherland

David Sutherland - Producer

David Sutherland has produced and directed numerous award-winning PBS/Frontline series, including: The Farmer’s Wife, Country Boys, Kind Hearted Woman, and Marcos Doesn’t Live Here Anymore. He received generous funding from the NEH for his feature documentary Jack Levine: Feast of Pure Reason, which aired on PBS’ P.O.V. series, as did his feature documentary Out of Sight. For PBS/American Experience, David produced and directed George Washington: The Man Who Wouldn’t Be King. David’s work has been honored with a retrospective at the Harvard University Film Archives and many of his films were also featured as part of MoMA’s Documentary Fortnight series. He’s currently working with King Bee Productions on a dramatic TV adaptation of his Frontline series, The Farmer’s Wife, which the The Los Angeles Times listed as one of the greatest shows of PBS’ 50-year history.

Project logline and bios courtesy of the grantees.