Interview with Jan Thompson, filmmaker: “Never the Same, The Prisoner-of-War Experience”

Jan Thompson, Never the Same, Bataan Japan POW WWIIJan Thompson, Professor of Radio-Television at Southern Illinois University Carbondale, is the producer of a new feature-length documentary, “Never The Same: The Prisoner of War Experience,” which is going to premiere this Saturday (April 6) in Chicago, at the Gene Siskel Film Center.  The timing of the premiere is great, as April 9 is the anniversary of the Bataan Death March and National POW Recognition Day.  I am very excited about this film, as I have been long been personally involved in this part of the WWII Asia-Pacific history.

“Never The Same: The Prisoner of War Experience,”

From the Chicago Tribune article

Jan’s documentary features narration by Emmy Award-winning actress Loretta Swit (“Hot Lips” of MASH fame), and the voices of an all-star cast of actors including Alec Baldwin, Ed Asner, Jamie Farr, Mike Farrell, Robert Loggia, Kathleen Turner, Robert Wagner and Sam Waterston.  The film celebrates and commemorates “courageous men who used ingenuity, creativity and humor to survive one of the most notorious times in history,” said Thompson, whose late father was a POW after his capture on Corregidor (like my grandfather – see my Facebook page in his memory) in the spring of 1942.

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To KNOW MORE ABOUT “NEVER THE SAME”:

OTHER LINKS OF INTEREST

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Influencers – Who and why are they?

This is an excellent brilliant 13-minute documentary called the INFLUENCERS, How trends and creativity become contagious, produced by R&I Creative and directed by Paul Rojanathara and Davis Johnson. This film is interesting because of the content and interviews that have a good rhythm. It is wonderfully produced with a polaroid look & feel, a great soundtrack, and spliced in quotes.

The people interviewed include a slew of diverse and articulate people, not least of which is the inanimate representation of Anthony Gormley, an English sculptor, whose statue is the leitmotif of the film.

INFLUENCERS TRAILER from R+I creative on Vimeo.

Who is an influencer? (quotes from the speakers)

  • “Someone who has a certain type of confidence…that they know they’re doing is the right thing, because they are comfortable in it.”
  • Someone who has a different way of thinking and expressing themselves…
  • There’s a group of people that are early adopters
  • Those are the people that everyone ends up paying attention to, … because they can recognize what the next thing is and are able to popularize it early.
  • “…is a person who can take an idea, brand, a concept that is not the mainstream consciousness and can bring it into the mainstream consciousness”

And my favorite description of an influencer:

  • “Somebody that other people listen to and react to….they have a certain amount of trust to what they say and they react to it…” In other words, they move people to act.

Another tidbit from the film: The great meetings are where people assemble by passion, such as SWSX, Glastonbury, Bonaroo, TED… Need more of those in our lives, don’t you think!

At the end of the video, the different speakers reveal who inspires them. This is one of my favorite questions for my podcast interviewees: who is your role model? Would that we all took real inspiration from some role models and acted accordingly every day!