Short trailer for the full-length interview with Jinhye Jo, a North Korean defector (2008).  Jinhye Jo’s two siblings and grandmother died of hunger in the late 1990’s in North Korea, her father was tortured and killed, and her mother was almost beaten to death by government officials.

The Witness Project is an initiative of the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation, based in Washington, D.C.  It’s goal is to document the life stories of those who have survived brutal communist regimes all over the world. Réka Pigniczky directed the first 17 interviews and trailers between 2013 and 2014.

Livia Gyarmathy is an award-winning film director from Hungary. Along with her husband, Géza Böszörményi, who spent over five and a half years at the Hungarian interment camp in Recsk, Livia made the first film ever about the Hungarian gulag. Under communism in Hungary (1948-1989), people were sent to prison-labor camps if they spoke against the government or just for being from a bourgeois family. This is Livia’s story.

Tony Nguyen was born in 1960 in Saigon, Vietnam, to a middle-class, well-educated family. His mother was a lawyer and his father, Son Nguyen, worked as a government official in military finance and defense. The Nguyen family were staunch South Vietnamese, strong anti-communist, freedom-loving people. In 1975, life changed drastically for the Nguyen family. While many fled South Vietnam, Son Nguyen stayed on trying to find a way to help his country. Tony Nguyen’s family suffered for six years after the fall of Saigon. His father was abducted in the middle of the night for his anti-communist views. Eventually deciding to flee their homeland, Tony’s family tried three times to escape Vietnam before eventually reaching America.


Réka Pigniczky

Executive Producer

Marion Smith


Gergő Kiss
David Chaytor
Marc Hamburg
Dallas Houston

Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation


Witness archive


Music by

Balázs Wizner