Sean Penn Production Documents The Journey Of The Peter C. Alderman Foundation

When Steve and Liz Alderman lost their son Peter at the WTC on 9/11, they almost immediately searched for a fitting manner to remember him. Randomly learning that there are hundreds of millions around the world who suffer severe mental illness due to torture, war and terrorism, the Bedford couple began the Peter C. Alderman Foundation to address this global epidemic. Ten years later, their story has received worldwide recognition and is the subject of a new documentary that has one of Hollywood’s most famous actors as its executive producer.
Sean Penn Production Documents the Journey of the Peter C. Alderman Foundation
Source - Photo by Liz Alderman

When Steve and Liz Alderman lost their son Peter at the WTC on 9/11, they almost immediately searched for a fitting manner to remember him. Randomly learning that there are hundreds of millions around the world who suffer severe mental illness due to torture, war and terrorism, the Bedford couple began the Peter C. Alderman Foundation to address this global epidemic. Ten years later, their story has received worldwide recognition and is the subject of a new documentary that has one of Hollywood’s most famous actors as its executive producer.

“We will be meeting him for the first time when it

premieres at the Tribeca Film Festival on April 26th,” says Liz Alderman of Sean Penn and Love Hate Love.

Interestingly, the film came about under very similar circumstances as the foundation. The Alderman’s were involved in the memorial committee right after 9/11 and found it rife with greed, politics and power plays. As a result, they knew a proper remembrance would have to be done on their own.

Out in San Francisco, NBC reporters Dana Nachman and Don Hardy found the same type of negative vibe surrounding their coverage of memorial efforts. There had been so much squabbling going on between families that they really wanted to find some positive stories where love triumphed over hate, says Ms. Alderman.

Through a mutual friend, Nachman and Hardy were introduced to the Alderman’s. The film is not just about us, she says, it’s the intertwining of three stories with ours being the most prominent.

Sean Penn wasn’t far behind as he was affiliated with Hardy and Nachman from their previously acclaimed documentary, Witch Hunt. “When they brought this to him,” she says, “he was very, very interested and pleased to executive produce.”

After all the preliminaries, the filmmakers set out to bring home the message. They traveled to one of PCAF’s rehabilitative centers in Uganda to witness firsthand a tragedy that is in no way isolated. “I think they were deeply affected,” she says.

At the same time, it was more than a walk along side the shoes of their subjects. “Don and Dana crawled inside our lives,” says Steve Alderman, and were with us


every minute as we functioned over there, added the retired oncologist.

As for the film’s effectiveness in conveying the tragedy and triumph of the foundation, Ms. Alderman feels she isn’t the best to comment since she’s seen it so many times and lives the life everyday. Instead, Alderman defers to the festival’s interest in the work.

“Its excellence is to me demonstrated by the fact that it was accepted at Tribeca,” she says. Additionally, it’s playing at the venue’s largest theater and is one of the few films in which a discussion will follow – Sean Penn included.

Otherwise, Love Hate Love isn’t necessarily an emotional journey the Alderman’s took after Peter’s death, but they certainly understand the concept the filmmakers were after. In return, they hope recent recognitions such as USAID’s upcoming case study on PCAF’s outreach into Liberia will become more common place. We’re advocating for our patients and raising awareness, he says. “That’s what’s important about the film.”

Bringing it back to the beginning, Peter Alderman no longer just lives in the memory of a legion of family, friends and individuals helped in places like Haiti, Cambodia and Africa. “Our daughter just gave birth to a baby boy on April 7th and his name is Peter,” she says.

One of five grandchildren, he’s the only one nearby and is very important to Steve and Liz, but given all the love and the story that now precedes him on celluloid, maybe someday many more will feel the same way.

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Article Written By richmonetti

I write and quite well

Last updated on 27-07-2016 3K 0

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