About the Film
After the collapse of the Communist regime in 1989, the world discovered more than 100,000 children living in Romanian orphanages. Many were not orphans, but the result of the country’s ban on abortion and contraceptives. Come Find Me tells the story of one of those children, Nori, as she travels from her adopted American home to find the family she lost almost 30 years prior.
The film follows-up on a story that received worldwide recognition in the early 1990’s. Beginning with a 20/20 feature story that revealed the shocking conditions of Romanian orphanages to the world, millions were captivated by the plight of these children. So significant was this story is that it reframed the narrative of post-Communist Romania.
Come Find Me picks up the story nearly 30 years later, with children raised in America but never quite healed from their traumatic origins and looking to find their roots in a country that has transformed significantly but still never quite healed from the Communist regime that ruled for nearly 50 years. The film speaks to universal themes of identity and family, as Nori is torn between two worlds — her privileged American upbringing vs. that of a discriminated and impoverished minority, the Roma (‘Gypsies’).
Latest News & Screenings
September 2020—Official selection of the 2020 Astra Film Festival in Sibiu, Romania. Astra is the largest festival for documentaries in Romania, and one of the most important festivals for the genre in Eastern Europe. The film was able to screen for a live audience on September 8th and was nominated for the Audience Award. Check out the site for the film.
August 2020— WINNER OF HONORABLE MENTION, BEST DOCUMENTARY at SEEFest LA 2020, the Southeast European Film Festival in Los Angeles. SEEFest is the leading festival in North America for films produced in and about Eastern Europe, with awards selected by an esteemed jury. Check out the press release for the awards, and the site for the film.
July 2020— SELECTED AS SEMI-FINALIST, DOCUMENTARY at 2020 Flickers’ Rhode Island International Film Festival.
April 2020— Selected to be part of SEEFest LA 2020, the Southeast European Film Festival in Los Angeles. SEEFest is the leading festival in North America for films produced in and about Eastern Europe. With the festival moving online due to COVID-19, will share details on the new timing for the fest.
Jan 2020— Selected to be part of the buyer’s online market that is part of Visions du Réel, an internationally renowned documentary film festival held in April each year in Nyon, Switzerland. In addition to the films presented in the different Festival sections, more films are specially selected for their international sales potential and will be available to industry professionals.
Dec. 2019 — After an extensive post-production process poring through the more than 100 hours of footage acquired, plus an additional production trip to Romania and Greece, the feature-length (80-minutes) film is ready for festival submissions. As screenings are confirmed, we will update here.
May 2019 — A work-in-progress 54-minute cut was screened for feedback. In attendance was the Vito family as well as several participants from the film. The film was very well-received with great thoughts as we expand to feature length in the next cut.
About the Team
Diana Nicolae, Producer & Director, is an accomplished documentary filmmaker who has produced or directed more than 50 films. She started her career as a journalist in her native country of Romania, working for television and BBC Radio. The focus of her documentary career is to give a voice to the voiceless, with particular focus on post-Communist Romania. Her debut film Red Darkness Before Dawn captured abuse in Communist-era prisons and was broadcast on PBS regionally, was a finalist for the ADL’s Dore Schary awards, and was acquired by the Hoover Institute among others. Her subsequent films have delved into topics as diverse as intellectual migration from Eastern Europe, substance abuse, dating violence, and a group of camera-shy nuns attempting to maintain traditions in a monastery that is one of Romania’s most visited tourist attractions. Her most recent documentary film One Mother’s Fire: The Gail Minger Story, which captures the story of a mother overcoming the tragic death of her son in a campus fire to fight for truth and justice, screened at more than 20 film festivals worldwide, garnered eight awards, and was broadcast on PBS reaching 5.5 million homes in eight states.
Noriflorentina Vito, Co-Director, is a first-time documentary filmmaker and graduate of the RTF College of Communication and Creative Arts at Rowan University. She is the owner/operator of Vito Media Productions, and is currently a newscast director, camera operator and editor at WBOC Salisbury in Maryland.
Randy Leopardi, Camera & Audio, is a first-time documentary filmmaker and graduate of the RTF College of Communication and Creative Arts at Rowan University. He currently works as a freelance camera operator and production assistant.
Matt Jozwiakowski, Producer & Editor, has worked as producer, camera and editor on over a dozen documentaries that have screened in national and international festivals and were broadcast on PBS. Most recently, he shot and edited a documentary on dating violence partnering with leading non-profit organizations, now distributed to over 350 colleges nationwide. With more than 15 years as a marketing director for multi-national iconic brands across household, healthcare, and food categories, he has also shepherded multi-million dollar advertising campaigns into market, achieving breakthrough results across both traditional and digital media.