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April 08, 2013 | posted in Filmmakers
As a young mother herself, filmmaker Delphine Lanson was moved by a story about Jérôme and François—two gay partners who wanted to start a family.
“They were friends of friends and when they told me their story, I immediately felt compelled to witness and share it,” she says.
Her film, “Father’s Birth,” follows the two Frenchmen as they travel to Waukesha, Wisconsin, to meet with Colleen, a wife and mother of three, who agrees to be their surrogate. Lanson could relate to their strong desire for parenthood in a country where surrogacy is not an option. She was also “very intrigued by Colleen’s motivation to help them.”
What she made was a film about hope, honesty and love—these traits just “ooze from Jérôme, François and Colleen,” Lanson says. “I hope [this film] brings people home with a renewed openness about what matters most in building your family.”
At previous screenings of her film, Lanson found people sharing their very personal stories about their children or their childhood with perfect strangers during the Q & A sessions. In particular, she remembers one 50-year-old woman with tears in her eyes saying that “she wished her parents had been François and Jérôme, rather than her own dysfunctional family.”
Just like an anxious father awaiting a baby’s birth, the first screenings of Lanson’s film made her “very nervous.” But now she is “more curious and eager to meet with the audience afterwards and share thoughts, information and impressions.”
You are probably wondering about the babies—twins, by the way. Lanson reports that they will turn two in a couple of months and “are joyful and healthy!” And yes, Colleen, François and Jérôme keep in touch, sending each other pictures and news.
Lanson says that they will all be reunited again soon at the Wisconsin Film Festival in Madison where the film screens next.
—Anne M. DiTeodoro
Photo by Janet Macoska.
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